Tuesday, 21 November, 2017

IEA: Global Crude Demand to Endure Wave of Electric Cars

Warmer weather, rising non-Opec output threaten oil market balance Crude oil futures decline on overseas leads
Kelvin Reese | 15 November, 2017, 01:37

Oil price should continue to rise towards $83 a barrel by the mid-2020s as global oil demand is poised to fall only modestly alongside the expected rise in electric vehicles over the next two decades, the International Energy Agency, or IEA, said on Tuesday.

"Oil is already facing stiff competition from ever-cheaper and more environmentally friendly energy sources as traditional fossil fuel users switch to cleaner, low-carbon alternatives", IEA said in its World Energy Outlook 2018. Bloated global petroleum inventories were reduced by 40 million barrels after Hurricane Harvey, pushing stockpile levels in wealthy nations below 3 billion barrels for the first time since 2014.

The Paris-based IEA revised demand growth down by 100,000 barrels per day (bpd) for both 2017 and 2018, for an increase of around 1.5m bpd this year, to 97.7m bpd, and 1.3m next, to 98.9m bpd, which could push the market back into a surplus in the first half of next year.

USA oil prices have risen above $55 a barrel recently amid geopolitical tensions overseas, supply disruptions and an anticipated extension of OPEC's production cuts next year.

The IEA delivered a surprisingly downbeat outlook for oil demand in its monthly market report, showing an expected slowdown in consumption that was at odds with a more bullish view from the producer group OPEC on Monday.

The IEA states that the shale oil revolution in the U.S. continues thanks to the "remarkable ability of producers to unlock new resources in a cost-effective way".

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The largest disruptive force to supply will be shale production in the USA - the IEA estimates United States crude oil will reach peak output in the 2020s of around 17m bpd.

The US government said on Monday US shale production in December would rise for a 12th consecutive month, increasing by 80,000 bpd. It expects global demand for oil to even rise in the decades ahead.

The IEA estimates that there will be 50 million electric vehicles (EVs) on the road by 2025 and 300 million by 2040, from closer to 2 million now.

"It's quite spectacular, because you're going to see the number of cars on the road globally double from 1 billion to 2 billion, thanks to electric vehicles and fuel economy standards", said Laura Cozzi, head of the Energy Demand Outlook division. Scientists just this week said that emissions of the heat-trapping gas rose this year after three years of not growing.

Analysts also noted that oil prices were being pressured by a global commodities selloff, led by base metals like nickel and copper, due to weaker-than-expected economic data from China.

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