Iraq produced well below its OPEC+ oil quota in March

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Iraq pumped 4.15 million barrels per day (bpd) of oil in March, 222,000 bpd short of its production quota under an agreement with other OPEC+ producers, data from state-owned marketer SOMO seen by Reuters showed on Tuesday.

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Iraq’s March output fell by 112,000 bpd from February, the data showed.

Iraq, like several other OPEC members, is struggling to pump more oil at a time of already tight global supply and soaring prices.

Brent crude futures last month touched their highest since 2008 at $139 a barrel. While prices have since fallen, they remained above $100 on Tuesday.

Iraq’s March production fell following field outages in the south, which halted a tenth of the country’s oil output.

The 400,000 bpd West Qurna 2 oilfield was offline for 12 days of maintenance which ended on March 8, and the 80,000 bpd Nassiriya field was shut for seven days until March 4 due to protests.

Upgrade work on Iraq’s Gulf ports, which lasted for most of 2021 and is scheduled to be finished in the current quarter, has also prevented Iraq from pumping larger volumes.

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