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Russian oil output already around 30,000 b/d below October level: Novak

Moscow — Russia has already lowered its oil output by around 30,000 b/d compared with October volumes, used as a baseline under the latest OPEC/non-OPEC crude production agreement, and still plans to reach a cut of 50,000 b/d by the end of January, Russian energy minister Alexander Novak said Friday.

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"We are gradually lowering output, our plan is that overall in January it will be 50,000 b/d less than in October," Novak said told reporters when asked about production volumes in January -- the first month that restrictions agreed upon in December came into force.

"Today we have already cut around 30,000 b/d from the October level. This is a preliminary figure," Novak said.

Russia has pledged to cut around 230,000 b/d from October volumes of 11.421 million b/d under the latest agreement. It is planning to do so gradually, reaching the target by the end of the first quarter. Novak said previously that this is because Russia cannot adjust output immediately due to the specifics of its climate and geology.

The country's crude oil and condensate production hit a record high of 11.45 million b/d in December, as Russian producers increased output ahead of the new restrictions coming into force.

-- Rosemary Griffin, rosemary.griffin@spglobal.com

-- Edited by Richard Rubin, newsdesk@spglobal.com

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