Venezuela plans to increase its oil production to 1.5-1.6 million barrels per day in 2019 to regain output to levels seen in 2018, the country's oil minister Manuel Quevedo said Thursday.
In a speech during a plenary session at Russian Energy Week in Moscow, Quevedo explained that the current production level dropped below 1 million barrels per day due to attacks on the country's energy infrastructure, which were aimed at harming its oil industry.
OPEC's data shows in August, the country produced 712,000 barrels per day. The country’s oil production has fallen significantly from averages of 1.911 and 1.354 million barrels per day in 2017 and 2018, respectively, according to OPEC secondary sources.
Two oil storage tanks located at the facilities of the Petro San Felix mixed oil company exploded in eastern Venezuela on March 13.
After the attack, Quevedo, the then president of Petro San Felix, had tweeted that the company had been the victim of “terrorist incursions” by political adversaries of President Nicolas Maduro.
The country has also experienced a number of power outages with a week-long outage that began on March 7, and another blackout on March 25.
The government said the outages were due to cyber attacks and physical sabotage.
Trouble in the electricity sector caused setbacks in the oil sector, and damage to production facilities affected exports at some of Venezuela's oil terminals while causing some to be shut down.
Reporting by Emre Gürkan Abay in Moscow
Additional reporting and writing by Busranur Begcecanli