The IEA, like OPEC, seems too cautious on Russian crude output in 4Q

On Sept. 15, three days after OPEC published its latest monthly report, I suggested that the cartel’s forecasters might be underestimating Russia’s output and overestimating Kashagan’s in the fourth quarter. From Russian preliminary data, September output looks close to 11.1 mmbpd, up from 10.7 mmbpd in August and from the all-time high 10.9 mmbpd in January 2016.

The International Energy Agency IEA), OECD’s energy consultant, made public the full version of its Sept. 13 report this week. It seems they are also underestimating Russia’s crude production in the fourth quarter, possibly by 200 to 300 thousand barrels per day, if Russia keeps pumping at the mid-September rate until year-end.

The IEA seems to have factored in Kashagan, although it’s not mentioned by name in the text. In the section on Russia, there’s a discussion of possible tax changes for oil and gas companies in 2017 but nothing on the impact of new field launches or the countrywide surge in drilling and fracking. A bit perfunctory compared, say, with their take on Brazil or Norway, especially considering the wealth of operating statistics available from Russia.

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