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The battle for customers among OPEC members that helped trigger oil's collapse is about to escalate.Oil's biggest slump in six years gained momentum in October as a wave of discounts by Middle Eastern producers signaled OPEC members were intent on defending market share against booming shale output from the U.S. The price of Saudi crude for Asian buyers was cut to the lowest in at least 14 years last month, a move followed by Iraq, Kuwait and Iran. Brent crude, the international benchmark, fell 48 percent last year, the biggest decline since 2008 amid a production surplus estimated by OPEC at about 1.5 million barrels a day.Exports from the south have also surged and are scheduled to reach a record 3.3 million barrels a day in February, the IEA estimates.The group pumped 30.2 million barrels a day last month, exceeding its target for the seventh consecutive month as Iraq expanded output by 150,000 barrels a day, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.The region is moving 400,000 barrels a day through the pipeline to Turkey it built last year, and will reach 1 million barrels a day on the link by the end of 2015, KRG Natural Resources Minister Ashti Hawrami said in London on Dec. 17 .
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