LONDON: Opec stuck to its prediction of a strong world oil demand recovery in 2021 led by the US and China despite uncertainties stemming from the pandemic, pointing to a need for more oil from the producer group.
In a monthly report yesterday, the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries said demand would rise by 6.6 per cent or 5.95 million barrels per day (bpd) this year. The forecast was unchanged for a second consecutive month.
The report’s forecast comes despite a slower-than-expected recovery in the first half of this year and as it warns of “significant uncertainties” such as the potential emergence of new variants of the coronavirus.
“Global economic recovery has been delayed due to the resurgence of Covid-19 infections and renewed lockdowns in key economies, including the Eurozone, Japan and India,” Opec said. “Overall, the recovery in global economic growth, and hence oil demand, are expected to gain momentum in the second half,” it said.