OPEC+ enters a second and final day of meetings on Thursday with sources saying the group is unlikely to decide imminently to pump more barrels to the market beyond August.
At its last gathering in early June, OPEC+ decided to increase output each month by 648,000 barrels per day (bpd) in July and August, up from a previous plan to add 432,000 bpd per month.
“Confirmation of this is likely to be a mere formality today,” Commerzbank analyst Carsten Fritsch wrote in a report. “What is more important is what will happen next.”
OPEC+ groups the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies such as Russia.
Talks begin at 1100 GMT with a meeting of the advisory Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee, followed by a full OPEC+ meeting.
Washington welcomed the producers’ decision in June which followed months of pressure from the West on OPEC+ to raise production to help lower oil prices.
International prices hit their highest since the record levels of 2008 after the West imposed sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine begun on 24 February, which Moscow calls “a special military operation”.
They have since eased but rose above US$115 this week because of tight supply and concern that OPEC has little ability to raise output.
French President Emmanuel Macron told U.S. President Joe Biden this week he had been told that Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, considered the only OPEC members with significant spare capacity, can barely raise output.
Biden will travel to the Middle East, including Saudi Arabia next month, and is widely expected to press Riyadh to raise production.
At least five OPEC+ delegates said Thursday’s meeting will focus on confirming August output policies and would not discuss September.
Two other OPEC+ delegates said the issue of production after August could emerge but it was unclear what steps could be taken.