Oil prices fell on Monday, extending a slump from Friday that ended weeks of rallying, after President Donald Trump demanded that producer club Opec raise output to soften the impact of USA sanctions against Iran. Trump has repeatedly called on Opec to keep oil prices low.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Monday downplayed the prospect of worldwide blowback from tough new sanctions on Iran's oil and gas customers, insisting the pressure campaign won't hurt trade talks with China - a major buyer of Iranian oil - or other US foreign policy goals.
Iran's economy is expected to shrink for the second consecutive year and inflation could reach 40 percent, an International Monetary Fund senior official said, as the country copes with the impact of tighter sanctions imposed by the United States.
The rally had gained momentum in April after Trump tightened sanctions against Iran by ending all exemptions previously granted to that major buyers.
It expected the sharp decline in Iran's economic activity (6 percent) amid sanctions to result in a mere 0.4 percent rate of growth for 2019 for the region's oil-exporting countries.
That could leave global supplies thin as the USA chokes off Iranian exports and unrest flares elsewhere. Venezuela was once a top-three OPEC producer.
Saudi Arabia won't exceed its OPEC+ deal output limit.
"This idea that some countries can fill the empty place of Iran's oil in the market is incorrect from different aspects, including a technical and political view", Zamaninia said.
Global benchmark Brent crude, meanwhile, rose 1.1 percent after Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih said OPEC and its partners remain focused on reducing oil inventories.
OPEC's biggest production gain occurred in Nigeria, where Total's Egina field has helped boost output. While the Saudis pledged to fill any gaps, the kingdom also remains committed to a pact with Russian Federation and other producers to keep a lid on output. "It will ultimately end up with more oil on the market, but short-term the knee-jerk movement for prices is still up".
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