Crude Oil Inventories Decline, but Imbalance to Continue: IEA

Oil market could tip out of balance on rising non-Opec production

Oil market could tip out of balance on rising non-Opec production

Oil prices held largely steady on Tuesday as the prospect of further rises in U.S. output offset some of the optimism that OPEC-led production cuts would tighten the balance between crude supply and demand.

The IEA also released the 2017 edition of its World Energy Outlook Tuesday morning.

Under its "New Policies Scenario", based on existing legislation and announced policy intentions relative to emissions and climate change, the oil price should continue to rise towards $83 a barrel by the mid-2020s.

A cooling Chinese economy also stoked some concerns about demand, although so far the country's refiners are processing crude oil near record levels of 11.89 million bpd.

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For all of 2017, total demand is now forecast at 97.7 million barrels a day, up by 1.5 million barrels a day (1.6%) compared to 2016.

"It is far too early to write the obituary of oil, as growth for trucks, aviation, petrochemicals, shipping and aviation keep pushing demand higher", said Fatih Birol, executive director of the Paris-based IEA.

Oil-dependent Venezuela's crude output dipped last month below 2 million barrels per day, its lowest level in almost three decades, global producer group Opec said on Monday.

The U.S. government said on Monday U.S. shale production in December would rise for a 12th consecutive month, increasing by 80,000 bpd.

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"I think this group of committed and responsible producers came together. and I think they will continue to do what it takes to take us to the next level", he said at an global oil conference. Besides oil barrel prices, the estimate factors in the milder temperatures as winter begins in the Northern Hemisphere. From then through 2040, greater fuel efficiency and more fuel switching lowers oil use for transportation.

"It's quite spectacular, because you're going to see the number of cars on the road double from one billion to 2 billion, thanks to electric vehicles and fuel economy standards", said Laura Cozzi, head of the Energy Demand Outlook division.

However, even rapid growth in the electric vehicle fleet would be unlikely to have a substantial impact on oil consumption for passenger transport until the mid-2020s, it said.

After an upbeat performance last week, oil prices edged lower for a second day Tuesday.

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Overall global energy needs are seen rising more slowly than in the past, but are still projected to expand by 30 per cent between today and 2040.

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