According to data from state marketing firm SOMO obtained by Reuters, Iraq, OPEC's second-largest producer, is struggling to increase oil production as much as its quota under the pact allows, with January output 120,000 barrels per day (bpd) lower than its production ceiling.
As per SOMO data, Iraqi oil production fell by 63,000 barrels per day in January compared to December. According to an official, this was owing to a lack of storage capacity in Iraq.
The official further stated that adverse weather, maintenance of export terminals, and technical challenges caused exports to fall in January.
According to a Reuters poll released earlier this week, OPEC members Congo, Iraq, Angola, Iran, and Libya had decreased or unchanged production in January due to unplanned disruptions and a lack of ability to pump more.
Iraq and a number of other OPEC and OPEC+ producers are not pumping as much as the accord requires, effectively tightening the market and confounding analyst expectations about market balances.