Saudi Arabia Pumps Record 9.8 Million Barrels/Day In March

Tyler Durden's picture

According to the latest OPEC data, Saudi Arabia, which in its own view, is some endless pool of easily retrievable crude, yet which Phibro's Andy Hall, as well as leaked confidential docs, claim is nothing but one big lie, pumped a record 9.834 million barrels per day, an increase of just 24K barrels from February's total (based on secondary market data, not direct communication). While we salute Saudi's peak production, which has never crossed over the 10 MMBPD level, we wonder, just how and where will Saudi get the 25% extra spare crude capacity needed to fully replace Iran's embargoed oil, which however continues to flow. Or it does at least according to Iran - oil production rose in February and March, if just redirected: India and certainly China (which is currently adding to its strategic reserves as pointed out here some time ago) are delighted to buy excess Iran production. Based on secondary market sources, Iran production has declined from 3.46MM BPD to 3.35MM BPD: hardly much of an "embargo" impact.

Below is Iran's production over the years compared to the price of Brent. Needless to say, Obama would certainly demand more from his bossom friends in the house of Saud, in an election year... if only they could deliver.

And this is where Saudi Arabia says it can pump to. At this point they may be the only ones who believe it.

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Bam_Man's picture

That is called "Making hay while the sun shines".

Bazinga's picture

or perhaps they were burning the midnight oil?

The trend is your friend's picture

The US and Europe just shot themselves in the foot by trying to embargo a sought after commodity.  This will only them more hostile towards Iran.  Come hell or high water we're going to war with them within 12 months

SRSrocco's picture


I see the world has been put back into a trance now that the Saudi's have produced a so-called record amount of oil.  However nice this looks on paper, they are exporting a WHOLE LOT LESS than they were 30 years ago.

According to 2011 BP Statistical Review, Saudi Arabia produced about 10 mbd in 1980 but only consumed about 600,000 barrels per day.  Today with their RECORD production of say 10 mbd, they now consume 2.8 mbd of their own production.

So... the Saudis are actually only exporting 7.2 mbd today whereas they exported 2.2 mbd more or a total of 9.4 mbd 30 years ago.

The world and especially the USA does not want to SWALLOW PEAK oil, because they want to continue driving around all day in their SUVS, buying crap they don't need and drinking coffee from Starbucks at $3 a cup

gookempucky's picture

Thanks for the stats SRS---also keep in mind folks that the drop off in real peak production as per the chart 1979-80 led to the beginning of salt water injection process's and by a miracle the production levels went back to par.

SRSrocco's picture

gookempucky....SPOT ON.

Very few understand the challenges the Saudis are having in keeping production from their 50+ year old oil fields.  They are pumping MILLIONS OF BARRELS of SEAWATER a day into their oil fields to keep oil coming out of the ground.  The water cut percentage keeps rising and when it gets to a certian level they shut in that well and drill another horizontal well above it.

This technique provides the world with much needed crude, but it does so by KILLING THE LIFESPAN OF THE OIL FIELD.  I would imagine one day... production will just fall off a cliff in the kingdom of Saud.

Then the reality of PEAK OIL will be slapped across the forehead of those who did not believe.


DaveyJones's picture

yup, all they're doing is accelerating the peak timeline

God has a SICK sense of humor. Wait, is there a difference?

BlackholeDivestment's picture

...what happens when H2o combines with pressure, heat and carbon/orgainc(s)?

goto 26:00 in video

I think I need to buy a gun's picture

put the pieces together i come up with enough oil thru 2013 so obama can get re-elected thru a dollar devaluation. 2013 when there is no oil and 10 gas is a big problem

Metalredneck's picture

I wish you guys had the election in the spring.  I hate the thought of my net worth crashing in winter, when I realize that my garden should be bigger.

JOYFUL's picture


in this case you may allow for a exception to your rule, as Iran might be said to be having it's cake and eating it too!

The strong growth of automobile manufacturing in Iran throughout the last decade is in stark contrast to the declining sales and channel stuffing of the capitalist roader economies(Iran is the middle easts' biggest carmaker)...the availability of unsold oil inventory is a spur to boosting domestic sales and the manufacturing base by keeping fuel prices low for the home market. 

Meanwhiles, state owned Khodro is expanding overseas production in places like Venezuela, Argentina, Egypt and other African markets, Azerbaijan, Syria,  and stands to make serious inroads in the burgeoning Turkish market.

I luv reading the comments from the chin-dribbling scriptoids who would have us believe that Iran is some kind of camel-powered desert day soon enough in their centrally planned 'western paradise'  aka Obamanation, they'll be dreaming of being able to afford a Samand, while Merica's carmaking lines will be reserved for producing black Stalinist style sedans for the potentates of state power to parade around in.

SRSrocco's picture


First of all, I am not apart of the BEAT IRAN INTO THE GROUND MENTALITY.  Secondly, they are also experiencing the same problems that are plaguing Saudi Arabia:


1975 = produced 6 mbd

1975 = consumed approximately 800,000 bpd

2011 = produced 4.2 mbd

2011 = consumed approximately 2 mbd

Thus, IRAN exported about 5.2 mbd in 1975, but are only exporting 2.2-2.3 mbd today.



DaveyJones's picture

aren't most producing nations. Tends to happen when your population grows and their standard of consumption grows too

JOYFUL's picture

Relax Big Fella, I was not linking you to the dribbler scribblers in the least...just tacking on a note about the many times I've seen such comments passed here to your credible observation about the silver lining to reduced exports stands....and I offer this modification of your rule:


SRSrocco's picture


Just when I finishing editing my comment, my access was denied.  The 2011 figures are actually for 2010.  Here is an update:


2010 = produced 4.2 mbd

2010 = consumed 1.8 mbd

2012 = produced 3.4 mbd

2012 = estimated consumption at 2 mbd

In 2010, net exports for IRAN were 2.4 mbd, however today they are estimated to be approximately 1.4-1.5 mbd.

The world NET EXPORTS may fall off a cliff within the end of the decade.


malikai's picture

I said it before, and I'll say it again. Nothing destroys oil dimand in a country like war. Iranian and eventually Saudi consumption will be cut appropriately when we bring them 'freedom'.

Citxmech's picture

I just want to see how long they can keep this rate up.

EscapeKey's picture

+1 for the export land model.

Death and Gravity's picture

Saudi Arabia, not Iran, in the last sentence, surely?

hedgeless_horseman's picture



USA is ramping it up, too.  We need to party like it is 1998...


And look at Texas!!!!



There has never been a better time
to buy or lease
a new Chevy Suburban!
10 City / 15 Hwy

MunX's picture

WW3 will use a lot of oil  :)

jus_lite_reading's picture

I got you beat-- Nissan Titan 4x4 FlexFuel 9MPG city 13MPG hghway

SRSrocco's picture

Hey Horsemen... could you be so kind to give me the details on how you produce pictures or graphs in the comment section?

Or is it a big TRADE SECRET?

12ToothAssassin's picture

You must be a ZH contributor for image tags to work in comments

Jacque Itch's picture

Peak oil and my 10 inch schlong... the 2 big lies of today

Gully Foyle's picture

Jacque Itch

How odd. I'm actually oiling the peak of my 10 inch schlong.

DoChenRollingBearing's picture

Gully, a belated "thank you" for posting the link to the clip from "On the Beach" a week or so ago.

We rented the movie from Netflix, yes, very depressing, but an excellent film.

Gully Foyle's picture


Did I?

While I do welcome thanks, I refuse to take credit for someone elses actions.

Especially if it brings enlightenment to another.

Have you ever seen Giant? All about Texas and oil. Book is better.

Besides Jett Rink rocks.

DoChenRollingBearing's picture

I've seen "Giant" twice.  Recently I took my wife down the the FL Keys.  We spent a night in Key Largo, and the place we stayed had "Key Largo" on a CD, so FINALLY got around to seeing THAT film.

tmosley's picture

Yes, this adds tremendously to the credibility of the peak oil death worship cult argument.


easypoints's picture

The planet follows certain laws. Gravity, thermodynamics, and other physics. "Worshiping" and "arguing" are not among them. Those are very human. It's difficult to debate the fact that the planet's resources are supplying a young, man-made economic system that requires infinite growth. So, when asking if that is sustainable, would you question the credibility of the man-made system, or the planet?

tmosley's picture

You presume two things:

A. that the "economic system" requires infinite growth

B.  that men can not change man made systems

Wrong on both counts.  The "economic system" doesn't need infinite growth, the government and central bankers do to perpetuate their ponzi scheme.  But no-one thinks that ponzis can last forever.  This one has simply lasted longer than most because it has coincided with several productivity revolutions.  And the man made system is only frozen in place on fossil fuel consumption because of overbearing government regulations forbidding the implimentation of alternatives, whether they be standard nukes, or super safe LFTRs that burn abundent, clean thorium.

easypoints's picture

You are correct about economics, but the growth in population is clearly exponential. Any economic system would still require more and more resources every year. Abundant energy/resources creates growth in EVERY system, be it bacteria in a petri-dish, bird populations on an island, or our global eocnomy. Take it away and the growth must end. Over-shoot the resource peak,  and there must be a decline in population, unless you find a new resource.

You say that alternatives are being repressed by the government and oil companies. Of course they are. But what new technology is so spectacular?

Most importantly, peak oil is a LIQUID fuel problem, not an electricity problem. Thorium and LFTR could replace the gas tanks of cars (if you can mine the materials for hundreds of millions of lithium batteries), but it does nothing for the paint, tires, and asphault roads... or the petrolium used in plastic, cosmeics, chemicals, and other products that are literally everywhere around you.

buzzsaw99's picture

The usa hates dictatorships. LMAO!!

carbonmutant's picture

The Saudi Oil reserves are like the Gold in Ft. Knox...

Subject to Government propaganda.

Gully Foyle's picture


At least the reserves aren't full of Tungsten.

taniquetil's picture

Clearly, speculators are to blame.

Sudden Debt's picture

Why not go for Whale Oil?!
Where are the Japanese when you need them?

Gully Foyle's picture

Sudden Debt

"Where are the Japanese when you need them?"

Dying slow deaths from radiation sickness.

yabyum's picture

It is tough to sneak up on the behemoths when you glow in the dark. And daylight too.

jefe95's picture

Hat Tip Bernanke.


Funny how much oil you can produce when the ppbl goes up.

Vagabond's picture

It's not the price per barrel going up that has the US producing more.  It's the lower EROI that has made drilling in the US make sense economically once again.  There just isn't as much cheap oil out there anymore, so it's time to go after some of our more expensive-to-drill reserves.

e-recep's picture

Pushing Iran out of the game has a price. Arabic muppets at work.

CrashisOptimistic's picture

There are others leaving the game.  Take a very close look at the reasons why Kirchner grabbed YPF from Repsol.  Specifically, look at Argentina's oil production decline, traversing multiple governments.  

They are going dry.  While you're at it, have a look at Indonesia's trend, too.

flacorps's picture

A shift toward natural gas as a fuel (or better yet, ammonia which can be made from natural gas and in many other ways, including electrolyzing water) would do a lot to keep 'em honest.

MunX's picture

We can do much better.

SheepDog-One's picture

Endless reserves of bullshit!