BP: OPEC strategy keeps oil prices stable during times of crisis
Oil prices are being kept stable during crises like the Iraq war thanks to the spare capacity maintained by Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) producers, most notable Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), said British Petroleum (BP) Middle East Economist, Andrew Barton.
At a presentation to members of the oil industry and business leaders in Abu Dhabi, Barton said the existence of available spare capacity is a deliberate policy by Saudi Arabia and some other OPEC members and that the OPEC production response worked “according to plan.” Emergency stocks in consuming countries – which are a substantial 1.28 million barrels - were not even touched, although their very existence may have also been a calming influence.
Basing his presentation on the BP Statistical Review of World Energy 2003, the economist said this spare capacity has helped to stabilize prices. Turning to global issues, Barton said that the growth in energy demand was notably slower now compared to the 1990s, largely because of improved efficiencies, a slowing of Asian economies and growing environmental concerns.
He said environmental concerns also play a part in the growth of demand for gas, which will continue to be the fastest growing major source of energy in the foreseeable future. Renewable energy, such as solar and wind turbine power, are growing rapidly but are very small in relation to total energy demand. — (menareport.com)
© 2003 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)