Oman aims to increase its crude output by 6% to an average of 860,000bpd in 2010, compared with 812,500bpd in 2009.

The rise would mark a third consecutive year of increased crude output from the country, reports Reuters.

Oman’s largest oil producer, Petroleum Development Oman (PDO), saw an output fall of 14,000bpd last year producing 552,000bpd, while the country’s overall output rose by 7.4%.

Crude output rose at an all-time high at 956,000bpd in 2001 and thereafter decreased yearly until 2007.

Oman has invested heavily to overturn the output decline from its ageing fields, and is expected to award 11 oil exploration and production deals in 2010 to increase long-term output.

PDO, which produces a little under 70% of the country’s total output, is looking for 540,000-560,000bpd output for the next few years.

PDO made four oil discoveries last year, which can add up to one billion barrels of recoverable reserves in Oman over the next ten to 15 years.

Being a small producer, Oman’s oil is part of a benchmark price used to value around 10mbpd of crude exports from the Middle East to Asia.