Saudi Arabia’s oil output dropped slightly in August while Iran’s output held steady ahead of an informal OPEC meeting scheduled for this month.

A source told Bloomberg that Saudi Arabia reported a 40,000 barrel per day output decline to OPEC for August, down from a record output of 10.67 million barrels per day in July.

That production decline would drag Saudi Arabia’s output down to about 10.63 million barrels per day.

OPEC’s production figures for August have not been made public yet.

Saudi Arabia has consistently kept its output above 10 million barrels per day since oil prices began falling in late 2014 in a bid to retain market share.

According to data seen by Reuters, Iranian oil output reportedly held steady at about 3.63 million barrels per day in August.

News of the output dip comes just three weeks before OPEC members are set to meet informally on the sidelines of the International Energy Forum.

The forum will take place in Algeria from September 26 to September 28.

Iran has refused to sign onto a production agreement until its oil production climbs back up to pre-sanction levels of about 4 million barrels per day.

An OPEC source told Reuters on Thursday that Iran may have boosted that output target to between 4.2 million to 4.3 million barrels per day.

Director for international affairs at state-run National Iranian Oil Co. Mohsen Ghamsari told Bloomberg on Thursday that Iran’s output is projected to climb above 4 million barrels per day either by the end of this year or the beginning of 2017.

Two previous attempts at reaching an OPEC production deal were scuttled earlier this year after Saudi Arabia declined to sign on when Iran refused to participate.

Qatar’s Minister of Energy and Industry and current OPEC President Dr. Mohammed Bin Saleh Al-Sada said early last month that he expects oil demand to grow in the latter half of this year.

Al-Sada added that the recent decline observed in oil prices and the current market volatility is “only temporary.”


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