OPEC+ seen sticking with oil output policy at Feb. 1 meeting: Delegates

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An OPEC+ panel is likely to recommend keeping the oil producer group's current output policy unchanged when it meets this week, three OPEC+ delegates told Reuters on Monday.

Ministers from OPEC+ countries - members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and others including Russia - are due to hold a virtual meeting at 1100 GMT on Feb. 1.

The panel, called the Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee (JMMC), can call for a full OPEC+ meeting if warranted.

Five OPEC+ sources told Reuters last week that the JMMC would discuss the economic outlook and the scale of Chinese demand, and was unlikely to suggest tweaks to current policy.

One said the rebound in oil prices in 2023 made any changes unlikely.

“The boat is not really in stormy seas right now, so why rock something that's not moving?” said Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Saxo Bank.

The group will want to buy some time given the uncertainty related to sanctions on Russia and their impact on supply, Hansen added.

OPEC+ agreed in October to cut its production target by 2 million barrels per day (bpd), about two percent of world demand, from November until the end of 2023.

The JMMC meeting had been due to follow a meeting of the OPEC+ joint technical committee (JTC) on Jan. 31. This has now been cancelled, three OPEC+ sources told Reuters on Monday.

The JTC advises the JMMC and the overall OPEC+ ministerial meeting on market fundamentals.

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