Kuwait ex­pects oil prices to rise fur­ther

The China Post - - BUSINESS INDEX & -

Oil prices are ex­pected to ex­tend a re­bound thanks to im­proved global growth, a drop in stock­piles and fewer drilling rigs, Kuwaiti Oil Min­is­ter Ali al-Omair said.

“We have reached a stage where a drop in oil prices is un­likely,” he said, cited by the of­fi­cial KUNA news agency on Tues­day night.

The Or­ga­ni­za­tion of Petroleum Ex­port­ing Coun­tries (OPEC), which ear­lier this month left its out­put tar­get un­changed, has seen a de­cline in ex­cess crude sup­ply in the in­ter­na­tional mar­ket which will push prices up, Omair said.

There has also been a drop in rig count and crude in­ven­to­ries, he added.

As a re­sult of a pro­duc­tion glut and a weak global econ­omy, crude prices plum­meted by more than 60 per­cent from June 2014 to Jan­uary be­fore re­cov­er­ing part of the losses.

Oil prices ex­tended their gains in Asia Wed­nes­day on ex­pec­ta­tions of a de­cline in U.S. crude in­ven­to­ries and ro­bust eco­nomic data from the eu­ro­zone.

U. S. bench­mark West Texas In­ter­me­di­ate for Au­gust de­liv­ery was up 12 cents at US$61.13 a bar­rel and Brent climbed 11 cents to US$64.56.

Omair said that the oil sec­tor had re­quested ad­di­tional fund­ing of more than one bil­lion di­nars (US$3.3 bil­lion) for the Gulf state’s new re­fin­ery af­ter bids by in­ter­na­tional con­sor­tia ex­ceeded bud­get es­ti­mates.

He said that the es­ti­mated cost of the 615,000-bar­rel-per-day (bpd) Al-Zour re­fin­ery would now sur­pass 5.0 bil­lion di­nars (US$16.5 bil­lion), up from the ini­tial cost of US$13.2 bil­lion.

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