OPEC: Fragile global economy means lower demand for 2012

Eric Watkins
OGJ Oil Diplomacy Editor

LOS ANGELES, July 12 -- Members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries said a fragile global economy is likely to hold the rise in oil demand to 1.32 million b/d in 2012, about 3% lower than this year.

“World oil demand is forecast to grow by 1.36 million b/d in 2011, slightly lower than in the previous report, as the unsteady global economy has added risks to the forecast,” OPEC said.

OPEC said demand for oil from its members this year is estimated at 30 million b/d, about 100,000 b/d higher than in the previous report, indicating a rise of 400,000 b/d over the previous year.

In 2012, OPEC said, the initial forecasts for world oil demand, non-OPEC supply, and OPEC NGLs indicate a demand for OPEC crude of 30.3 million b/d, an increase of 300,000 b/d over the current year.

However, these forecasts could be impacted by unforeseen events, the report said, noting that global economic recovery has been facing “challenges” across the member states of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

“US gasoline demand is expected to be back in its normal growing mode; however, it will remain a major factor affecting oil demand projections,” the OPEC report said, also suggesting consumption may be increased by the “disruption in nuclear power generation in Japan.”

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

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