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NSD Logo The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC today said, Iran remains a very important member of the oil cartel as Tehran braces for a new round of USA sanctions, partially targeting its crude exports. OPEC revenues will decline to US$719 billion in 2019, according to EIA projections, driven mainly by lower crude oil prices, as well as slightly lower OPEC production and exports.

"Other oil producers can not replace Iran's oil", said Moayyed Hosseini Sadr, an adviser to Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh.

He didn't however address how the global oil industry immediately can replace Iranian crude supplies in an already-tight market.

According to Bloomberg tanker tracker data, Iran now has four supertankers carrying about 7 million barrels of crude anchored off its main export terminals for at least seven days.

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At 0936 GMT, November WTI Crude Oil is trading $69.60, up $0.92 or +1.34% and December Brent Crude Oil is at $78.65, up $1.06 or +1.37%.

For the time being, increases in production by Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation, a surge in USA exports to 3 milllion bpd and a slight recovery in Libya have helped to soothe market jitters about supply, leading to prices falling for Brent crude from around $79 per barrel at the end of June to around $72 barrels in mid August.

Iran is the third-largest oil producer in the after Saudi Arabia and Iraq. Benchmark Brent crude is already nearing 80 USA dollars a barrel and some believe this figure may go even higher.

The producer group said in June that it would agree to some supply increases starting in July, though the specific targets were not announced at the time.

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Bloomberg reported Tuesday, citing unnamed Saudi sources, the kingdom was now comfortable with prices above $80 per barrel, at least for the short-term. Earlier this month, Saudi shipments into the USA reached a four-week average of 1 million barrels a day for the first time since late 2017, according to government data. United States crude stockpiles rose by 1.2 million barrels to 397.1 million in the week to September 14, the American Petroleum Institute said.

Official inventory data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration will be released later on Wednesday.

"Overnight chatter suggests that the Saudis are more than happy with a Brent price above $80 or that OPEC, more generally, is not considering raising output".

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