Qatar sees ‘more balanced’ oil market in second half
The global oil market should be “more balanced” in the second half of the year, Qatar’s energy minister said Wednesday before an OPEC meeting widely expected to leave output unchanged.
“The last nine months or so have been particularly challenging for the oil industry,” Mohammed Al-Sada said in Vienna ahead of Friday’s semi-annual meeting.
“However, there are a number of reasons to feel optimistic about the general situation going forward ... There should be a more balanced market in the second half of this year.”
Sada, speaking at a two-day OPEC seminar involving industry figures, said however that the market was “not out of the woods yet” and that “still a lot of uncertainty” remained.
At its last meeting in November, OPEC’s 12 members, which pump around 30 percent of the world’s oil, kept its official production target of 30 million barrels per day.
This was despite a sharp fall in the price of oil and was seen as an attempt to maintain OPEC’s share of a market flooded by a vast supply glut caused in part by the boom in U.S. shale oil.
The strategy appears to have paid off, analysts say, with shale oil producers — which have higher production costs — squeezed and the oil price recovering in recent weeks.