Composition of the new OPEC Reference Basket

No 8/2005
Vienna, Austria
15 Jun 2005

The 136th (EO) Conference having received and deliberated this morning on the Report of the Secretariat on the composition of the new OPEC Reference Basket of crudes (ORB), has approved its implementation with effect from 16 June 2005.

The 135th Meeting of the Conference, held in Isfahan, 16 March 2005, approved the recommendation of the Board of Governors and the Economic Commission Board to change the composition of the ORB, from seven crudes to a more representative basket composed of 11 Member Country crude streams. These represent the main export crudes of all Member Countries, weighted according to production and exports to the main markets. The Conference directed the Secretariat to calculate the new proposed Basket on a trial daily basis in parallel with the current ORB, reporting back on the results to the next Meeting of the Conference, in light of which the Conference would announce the effective date of implementation.

The new ORB is made up of the following: Saharan Blend (Algeria), Minas (Indonesia), Iran Heavy (Islamic Republic of Iran), Basra Light (Iraq), Kuwait Export (Kuwait), Es Sider (Libya), Bonny Light (Nigeria), Qatar Marine (Qatar), Arab Light (Saudi Arabia), Murban (UAE) and BCF 17 (Venezuela).

At present the API gravity for the new Basket is heavier, at 32.7º compared to 34.6 º for the previous basket of seven crudes. In addition, the sulphur content of the new Reference Basket is more sour at 1.77%, compared to the previous basket of 1.44%.

The new ORB better reflects the average quality of crude oil in OPEC Member Countries.