×

UPDATE 1-Compliance with oil supply cuts hits record, overhang shrinks

* Oil inventory overhang shrinks to 44 million barrels

* Compliance hits record 138 percent

* Meeting looked at new metrics to assess supply cut - sources (Adds details from OPEC statement, source comments)

LONDON, March 21 (Reuters) - Compliance with a global deal to cut oil supply hit a new high in February, a joint OPEC and non-OPEC committee estimated, suggesting a rise in the price of crude has not weakened commitment.

Producers in the pact achieved 138 percent of pledged output reductions last month, OPEC said in a statement, a record since the deal among OPEC and non-member countries aimed at clearing a glut and bolstering prices began in January 2017.

The previous high was reached in January, at 133 percent.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, Russia and several other non-OPEC producers have extended the pact until the end of 2018.

The supply cut's original aim was to shrink oil inventories in developed economies to their five-year average. Stocks in February were 44 million barrels above that level, OPEC said, the closest the group has come to the target.

"The committee stressed that all participating countries should strive to achieve or exceed full conformity with their voluntary production adjustments," the OPEC statement said.

"February continued the accelerated rebalancing path witnessed in recent months."

The compliance figures reflect both high adherence by top exporter Saudi Arabia and other Gulf OPEC countries, as well as an involuntary slide in production in Venezuela, whose output is dropping amid an economic crisis.

OPEC's deal has helped boost oil prices, which topped $71 a barrel this year for the first time since 2014 and were above $68 on Wednesday, supported by a surprise decline in U.S. inventories.

While developed-country oil stocks are dropping closer to the five-year average, OPEC is talking of adjusting the metric to give a more complete picture of the supply cut.

The committee, which met at OPEC's Vienna headquarters on Monday, discussed this issue but made no conclusions, sources familiar with the matter said.

To get a broader picture, producers could look at a longer period than five years, or take into account inventories in other countries, floating storage and oil in transit, OPEC officials have said.

The committee includes officials from Saudi Arabia, Venezuela and Algeria, plus non-OPEC Russia and Oman. (Editing by Dale Hudson)