(MENAFN - Qatar News Agency) The demand for crude oil worldwide was continuing to ease, largely because of the weak in international climate and a slowdown in economic activity, according to an IEA report issued here Friday.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) said noted that crude prices continue to remain firm in the context of tensions in some producer areas, like Iran, where there is a selective embargo on oil exports from that country.
The IEA observed, from the technical point of view that the market could be seen to be returning to "normal conditions," or a "business as usual" context, with the "unexpected" rebuilding of OPEC spare capacity and other factors. "But the clearest departure from 'business as usual' may be the reduction in Iranian exports since July as a result of expanded international sanctions.
Whereas many expected the sanctions to lose some bit in September, as Iranian exporters and some of their clients were reported seeking ways to get around insurance constraints, in fact, compliance appears to have tightened and Iranian crude deliveries fell to an estimated 860,000 b/d, a new low," the report said. "This rebalancing of supply and demand will be accompanied with such sweeping changes in regional balances that it is more likely to feel like uncharted territory than familiar ground," the report added.
Separately, the IEA stated that it was revising global demand growth down by 100,000 bbls from a month ago and was now estimated overall demand for 2012 at 89.7 million barrels per day (mb/d), up only 700,000 b/d from 2011. For 2013, the Agency said demand growth was unchanged from earlier forecasts and was expected to rise 800,000 to reach 90.5 mb/d.
The International Monetary Fund's predictions of 3.3% global economic growth for 2012 and 3.6% world GDP expansion in 2013 had already been taken into account by the report and did not affect estimations in this month's report, the IEA said.