While energy markets have yet to recover from a seven month long price rout, OPEC is keeping its foot on the gas pedal and pumped about 31.11 million barrels per day in May.
According to Platts, OPEC’s May output jumped by 180,000 barrels per day over April and is the group’s highest monthly production volume since October 2012.
“OPEC’s communique after the June 5 meeting mentioned that members had been urged to adhere to its production ceiling. That’s something of a tall order, given that there are no quotas and that the 30 million bpd ceiling is supposed to cover production from Iraq, which hasn’t been part of OPEC’s production management system for years,” Platts senior correspondent Margaret McQuaile said.
Saudi Arabia led the pack by adding 150,000 bpd in production last month, boosting its total production to 10.25 million bpd in May.
Angola also saw its output jump by 70,000 bpd last month while Iraq recorded a 50,000 bpd production hike.
Smaller production increases also came from Angola, Algeria, the United Arab Emirates and Venezuela.
Platts said the extra production was partially offset by a 90,000 bpd production decline in Libya that pushed daily production in that country down to 430,000 bpd.
Iran, Kuwait, Nigeria and Qatar also saw their production dip sightly in May.
Earlier this month, OPEC members agreed to keep its previous 30 million barrel per day target in place for another six months.
In a report issued after the group’s meeting, OPEC acknowledged that crude supply levels are “well above” the five year averages in terms of absolute volume and said it is an indication that the market is “comfortably supplied.”
The group expects global oil demand to grow in the second half of 2015 and in 2016, with much of the gains driven by non-OECD countries.
OPEC will meet again on December 4.