The production facility of Saudi Aramco's Shaybah oilfield is seen in the Empty Quarter, Saudi Arabia May 22, 2018. REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah
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The U.S. Energy Information Administration, puts it at just 1.4 million barrels a day, and estimates that it will drop to 1.2 million by late 2019, one of the lowest levels on record and similar to 2008 when oil prices zoomed to $150 a barrel.Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih last week said more barrels can flow "within days and weeks". Officially, the kingdom claims to be able to pump at a maximum of 12.5 million barrels a day, up from a near-record 10.4 million produced in August spare capacity of more than 2 million barrels.Before the sanctions were announced in May, Iran was exporting between 2.5 million and 2.8 million barrels a day. Realistically, most industry executives define it as production that can be brought onstream in 30 days, and then sustained for at least three months.Over the years, Saudi Arabia has been cagey about how much of its spare capacity falls in each bucket. The United Arab Emirates is bringing forward the expansion of the offshore Umm Lulu and SARB fields, which will pump 129,000 barrels a day by the end of the year, up from 50,000 barrels a day now.
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