Several notable disruptions to non-OPEC production commenced or intensified since the beginning of this year, as discussed in the June 26, 2012 report on The Availability and Price of Petroleum and Petroleum Products Produced in Countries Other Than Iran. Unplanned outages to non-OPEC production totaled around 1.0 million bbl/d in June 2012, higher than the estimate given in the June 26th report. The increase is due to an offshore workers' strike in Norway that affected 230 to 250 thousand bbl/d of crude oil and natural gas liquids production, according to Statoil. On July 9, Norway's government ordered mandatory arbitration and an end to the strike, forestalling a threatened lockout that could have impacted all of Norway's offshore production.
Unplanned disruptions also rose slightly in the second half of June due to a labor protest in Argentina that lowered production from the Cerro Dragon oil field, which has a capacity of 100 thousand bbl/d. The field's operator is gradually ramping up production at the field as protestors have mostly withdrawn from the area.
EIA expects that OPEC members will continue to produce about 30 million bbl/d of crude oil over the next two years to accommodate the projected increase in world oil consumption and to counterbalance supply disruptions. Projected OPEC crude oil production increases by about 0.8 million bbl/d in 2012, and then falls by 0.9 million bbl/d in 2013, as non-OPEC supply growth increases and stocks rise slightly. OPEC non-crude oil liquids (condensates, natural gas liquids, and gas-to-liquids), which are not covered by OPEC's production quotas, averaged 5.5 million bbl/d in 2011 and are forecast to increase by 0.3 million bbl/d in 2012 and less than 0.1 million bbl/d in 2013.
EIA expects Iran's crude oil production to fall by about 1 million bbl/d by the end of 2012 relative to an estimated output level of 3.6 million bbl/d at the end of 2011, and by an additional 200 thousand bbl/d in 2013. Iran's output decline has continued to accelerate since the fourth quarter of 2011. EIA believes that this acceleration reflects erosion in Iran's crude oil production capacity due to the country's inability to carry out investment projects that are necessary to offset the natural decline in production from existing wells, as well as the impact of lower Iranian crude oil exports due to recently enforced EU and U.S. sanctions. A number of foreign companies that were investing in Iran's upstream have halted their activities as a result of previous U.S. sanctions, which have been compounded by tighter measures enforced since the start of this year that have made it increasingly difficult to do business with the country. EIA expects that the forecast decline in Iran's output will be offset by increased production from other OPEC member countries.