Saudi and Opec Oil Output
A file photograph of a Saudi Aramco oilfield.Reuters

Oil prices fell in Asian trading on Thursday 7 May after hitting 2015-highs in the previous session as traders moved to take profits on a multi-week rally.

The rally in crude prices was fuelled by the first drawdown in US inventories since January as well as a weakening dollar.

The spike in oil prices has been supported by stronger-than-expected demand growth and a slowdown in crude supply, yet traders said that global crude markets remained well supplied, prompting many to sell contracts to cash in on the recent rally.

Comments by the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) also indicate that core Gulf oil producers are not wavering in their strategy to focus on market share rather than cutting output alone. This suggests that big policy changes are unlikely at the June meeting unless non-Opec producers change their stance.

As a result, benchmark Brent crude futures were trading at $67.25 per barrel, down 52 cents since their last settlement. US WTO crude was down 48 cents at $60.45 a barrel.

"Weaker sentiment was also driven by comments from Iran's oil minister, who indicated its output would increase to 3.8 million barrels per day within six months if sanctions were lifted," ANZ bank said in a note.

Meanwhile, India has reached a deal to develop a strategic port in south-east Iran despite US pressure not to rush into any such trade agreements before world powers clinch a final nuclear accord with Tehran.