Oil prices dip almost 2 per cent

A pump jack stands at dusk in the Permian Basin area in Texas U.S. Bloomberg  Angus Mordant

Earlier this week, the Energy Information Administration reported that US crude inventories rose to their highest level since November 2017.

Oil markets have been pushed up by more than a third this year by supply cuts led by the OPEC, US sanctions on oil exporters Iran and Venezuela, and escalating fighting in Libya.

Its 14 members pumped 30.02 million bpd in March, its lowest output figure since February 2015.

Warns demand fell in developed OECD countries by 0.3 million bpd.

"Electrical outages added a further hurdle to Venezuelan production, which fell by 290,000 barrels per day in March to 732,000 barrels per day".

The report also said that Angola was one of China's three largest oil suppliers, together with Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation, with shares of 11.3%, 15.2% and 14.6% in February, respectively.

Global oil demand is estimated to average 99.91 million bpd this year, compared with 98.70 million bpd in 2018, OPEC said.

OPEC also revised down non-OPEC oil supply growth in 2019 by 60,000 bpd "due to extended maintenance in Kazakhstan, Brazil and Canada".

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OPEC revised demand growth down in 2019 to 1.21 million bpd due to "slower-than-expected economic activity".

On the demand side, most of the world's growth in fuel consumption is coming from Asia.

Russian Federation is also ready to boost supplies.

Oil markets are tightening amid the increasing effectiveness of US sanctions on Iran and Venezuela, the International Energy Agency said yesterday.

After a production glut led to prices dropping previous year, OPEC members and allies including Russian Federation agreed in December to trim production.

Meanwhile, the latest EIA report showed that the United States crude inventories rose 7 million barrels to 456.6 million barrels in the last week, their highest since November 2017. WTI whit a high of $64.79 going back to November 1 earlier this week.

In March, OPEC crude oil production tumbled by 550,000 b/d with losses in Venezuela, together with lower output from Saudi Arabia and Iraq. "Iranian production was stable at 2.7 million barrels per day, (but) could take a further hit if the U.S. cuts import waivers in May", said Jefferies bank on Friday.

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