Venezuela’s state-owned PDVSA is considering a declaration of force majeure on some of its oil supply contracts in June unless its clients agree to accept volume reductions of up to 50%, Argus reported on Tuesday, citing PDVSA officials.
Geopolitics has taken over the oil market, driving oil prices up to three-year highs. The inventory surplus has vanished, and more outages could push oil prices up even higher. Yet, there are some signs that demand is starting to take a hit as oil closes in on $80 per barrel.
Oil firms, including Norway’s Statoil, U.S.’ Anadarko Petroleum Corp, China’s CNOOC and Malaysia’s Petronas, have shown interest in Argentina’s auction this year of offshore blocks for exploration and production, the country’s energy minister said.
Venezuela’s oil production is running 1.5 million barrels per day (bpd) short of its historic output but it is something that the country must address itself, Ecuador oil minister Carlos Perez said. Caracas should address the shortfall on its own, added Perez on the sidelines of the CERAWeek energy conference in Houston.
United States shale oil output is set to surge over the next five years as drillers recover rapidly from a three-year slump, the International Energy Agency said, sharply upgrading its previous growth forecasts. A landmark deal in 2017 between OPEC and other oil producers including Russia to curb output in order to battle a global glut materially improved the outlook for other producers as oil prices rose sharply throughout the year, the IEA said.
The United States is in the midst of an energy revolution.
Oil production has risen by 5 million barrels per day (bpd) since 2010, an increase of nearly 100 percent. New technology, particularly techniques in shale oil drilling, has opened up vast new opportunities for oil and gas companies.
Oil futures fell sharply Friday, with the U.S. benchmark settling below $40 a barrel after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries agreed to keep pumping crude at current production levels despite a global glut.
Russia and Mexico – non-OPEC countries, which have been invited to participate Venezuela-proposed meeting this week – have no intention to cut oil production, International Oil Daily reported.
Despite what appears to be a saturated oil market in 2014, oil producers around the world will struggle to meet rising demand over the next few decades.
West Texas Intermediate, WTI crude closed at a three-year low on Wednesday with prices under pressure from the growing oil glut created by the U.S. shale boom and the restart of Libya's largest operational oilfield.