Oil’s return to $74 a barrel lifts energy stocks
In the long-term, many oil analysts expect the world to become increasingly dependent on oil production from the Middle East, as U.S. shale fades in importance. However, geopolitical turmoil is already causing disruptions in major oil-producing countries in the Middle East, raising questions about the region’s ability to supply the global market in the long run.
The IEA has repeatedly warned that while U.S. shale has led to oversupply in the short run, shale output cannot meet future demand by itself. By the mid-2020s, especially because there are questions about the longevity of U.S. shale, there could be a much greater reliance on the Middle East, just as there was in the past.
However, according to the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies (OIES), the deteriorating geopolitical landscape in the Middle East could leave longstanding scars on the region’s energy sector.
Geopolitical threats are cropping up in various ways in the Middle East and North Africa. Formal institutions have been weakened, and in places like Libya, Yemen and Syria there is an absolute lack of legitimacy in government. Non-state actors have stepped into the void, such as Hezbollah, the Houthis, Libya Dawn, and others, according to OIES. These rivaling power centers make it tricky for oil companies and oilfield s