(MENAFN - Arab Times) Sheikh Fahad Al-Dawood Al-Sabah, a Kuwaiti expert in oil strategies, on Saturday estimated the reserves of the unconventional shale oil in the United States at two trillion barrels.
"This is the largest such reserve in the world at least so far," he said in statements to KUNA, citing recent data by the International Energy Agency (IEA) and the US Energy Institute (USEI). "This amount of shale oil is eight times more than the conventional oil reserves in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, 18 times that of Iraq and 21 times that of Kuwait," Sheikh Fahad noted.
The US has made a breakthrough in the exploitation of the shale oil in the recent years which constitute a strategic turning point in the global oil market in the two decades ahead. "The US oil production saw a momentum leap in 2012, increasing by seven million barrels a day compared to the previous years," he stated, expecting the output to hit a new record high of 900,000 bpd next year.
Asked about the impact of the surge in the US oil production on the Gulf countries, Sheikh Fahad said the impact will be definitely negative in the long run since the oil-rich Gulf countries on exports to the US market as one of the world's largest energy consumers. "But the impact is unlikely to be seen in the short as the US imports at present between eight million and nine million bpd so it cannot do without the Gulf oil," he opined. The Gulf countries have the world's largest reserves of conventional crude oil estimated at 486.8 billion barrels or 35.7 percent of the world's total and 70 percent of the OPEC reserves, he revealed. He called on the Gulf countries to stop overreliance on oil revenues and rely instead on real investment in such areas as industry and investment through partnership with leading global corporations. Meanwhile, oil prices went up in the last two days mainly due to the retreat of the US dollar against the Euro and the bomb attack on the US embassy in Ankara yesterday.
In its weekly report issued here on Saturday, the International Financial Brokerage Group (IFBG) said the bomb blast aroused concerns over tensions in the Middle East, the main source of the world energy, amid unstable financial market. The US Crude futures ended the last week 2 percent up for the eight week running while Brent Crude futures closed above 116 pb yesterday " a four-month record high, according to the report. The US crude ended the week up by 1.89 or 1.9 percent as the Brent Crude continues gains for the third week running, the report said, citing NYMEX data. The US light crude futures for March delivery closed at 97.77 pb up by 28 cents, or 0.29 percent. The Brent Crude futures, March delivery, went up by 1.18 to 116.73 pb, a record high since mid-September last year, before declining to 116. 25 pb. Meanwhile, the West Texas Intermediate (WTI) declined by 65 cents to 96. 84 pb, it added.