It's one thing to hear it from 'Big Oil' companies, public relations firms and others with vested interests. It's something else entirely when the International Energy Agency (IEA) bluntly says the energy boom in the U.S. will 'displace OPEC as the driver of (oil) supply growth.'
North America will provide 40 percent of new supplies to 2018 through the development of light, tight oil and oil sands, while the contribution from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) will slip to 30 percent, according to the IEA.
"The supply shock created by a surge in North American oil production will be as transformative to the market over the next five years as was the rise of Chinese demand over the last 15,” the Paris-based adviser to 28 oil-consuming nations said in its latest report.
And that's one of the most important elements of the report. For American consumers, the message is that regardless of how flat the U.S. economy may be, there is no doubt at the IEA that global demand for oil will grow and much of that demand will be met by oil from N. America, perhaps more so than the Middle East.
IEA said that consumption in emerging economies may overtake developed nations this year. Global oil demand will increase by 6.1 million barrels a day, or 6.7 percent, to 96.7 million a day by 2018 as the economic recovery gathers pace. Demand estimates for 2017 are about 95,000 barrels a day less than forecast in the agency’s previous report, as weaker-than-expected growth this year crimps subsequent annual totals.
Most of the new production will come from outside OPEC, according to the IEA, which last year had predicted that supply growth would be spread equally between the two blocs. Non-OPEC producers will bolster output over six years by 6 million barrels a day to 59.3 million a day to 2018 while OPEC crude capacity will rise by 1.75 million a day, the agency forecast.
North American production will increase by 3.9 million barrels a day from 2012 to 2018, making up more than half of the non-OPEC gain. Access to these supplies has rescued many U.S. refineries from closure and will secure their place as exporters of gasoline and naphtha, while hurting other operators that aren’t configured to process the new lower-sulfur, low-density crude, the IEA said.
“Tight oils are a very important source of current supplies, and will be for the foreseeable future, but one shouldn’t get carried away,” said Amrita Sen, chief oil market analyst at Energy Aspects Ltd. in London. “If we get a few years of oversupply, prices falls, and we will see tight oils output fall.”
Demand for OPEC’s crude will be 30.4 million barrels a day in 2018, an increase of less than 1 percent from last year’s call-on-OPEC of 30.12 million a day, according to the report.
Oil use in emerging nations may surpass consumption in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development as early as this quarter, and is forecast to expand by 1.4 million barrels a day, or 3 percent, a year to 2018, according to the report. In contrast, demand in the OECD will contract by 250,000 a barrels a day, or 0.6 percent, a year in the period.
There it is. 'Global demand' is as much a factor in the NYMEX price of crude oil as anything else. You can't 'separate' it from the price we pay at the pump.