Oil rises to $67 on cuts to Saudi, Venezuelan exports

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Drilling rigs are parked up in the Cromarty Firth near Invergordon, Scotland, Britain January 27, 2015.

High drilling activity a year ago resulted in a more than two million barrels per day rise in production, to 12.1 million bpd reached this February, making the United States the world's biggest producer of crude oil ahead of Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures stood at about $56.39 per barrel at 0323 GMT, up 32 cents, or 0.6 percent from their last close on Friday.

Brent crude futures were at $66.76 per barrel, up 18 cents, or 0.3 percent.

Prices of the barrel of the American benchmark for the sweet light crude oil remain firm in the first half of the week and are now targeting yearly peaks in the mid-$57.00s.

The so-called OPEC+ alliance, including Russian Federation and other producers, agreed in December to reduce supply by 1.2 million bpd from 1 January for six months, which will help to boost oil prices after last year's downward trend.

On Jan. 1, OPEC+ began new production cuts to avoid a supply glut that threatened to soften prices.

Riyadh has voluntarily cut its supply by more than the deal requires and in April will keep output "well below" 10 million bpd, the Saudi official said - less than the 10.311 million bpd that the kingdom had agreed to pump.

The was one of the major talking points in a meeting between Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan and his Saudi counterpart and the chairman of Saudi Aramco, Khalid A Al-Falih, in New Delhi on Saturday.

A host of involuntary supply curbs in OPEC members, caused by unrest in Libya and United States sanctions on Iran and Venezuela, have also boosted prices.

In the United States, domestic crude production is expected to grow slower than previously anticipated in 2019, averaging about 12.3 million bpd, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said.

While OPEC members agreed to cut about 800,000 barrels, their non-OPEC allies led by Russian Federation resolved to cut their output by 400,000 barrels, in a bid to strengthen crude oil prices, tighten and stabilize the crude oil market. "The EIA report reined some of that in, and the report was supportive in that respect", said John Kilduff, a partner at Again Capital LLC in NY.

USA crude oil output will rise almost 2.8 million bpd, growing to 13.7 million bpd in 2024 from an average of just under 11 million bpd in 2018, the IEA said, making the United States by far the biggest oil producer in the world. In February, US crude oil exports hit an all-time high, with shipments amounting to over 3.6 million barrels a day.

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