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BRIEFLY

Energy

September 07, 1993|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Iran Unexpectedly Cuts Oil Output: OPEC's oil production fell by 455,000 barrels a day in August to 24.33 million barrels mainly due to the unexpected drop in Iran's output, the Middle East Economic Survey reported. The respected oil industry newsletter said that after months of producing more than the quota set by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, Iran cut output from 3.62 million barrels a day to 3.325 million last month. The drop put Iranian output slightly below its quota of 3.34 million barrels daily, the first time this year Iran has been under the OPEC ceiling. But the weekly newsletter cautioned that "market watchers appear reluctant to attribute the August cut to any newfound respect in Tehran for OPEC quota discipline." Rather, "the real reasons are more likely to be found in marketing foul-ups with the traders who customarily handle the transit of Iranian crude through Egypt's Sumed pipelines" to the Mediterranean.

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