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Vol. 12, No. 25 Week of June 24, 2007
Providing coverage of Alaska and northern Canada's oil and gas industry

BP’s statistical review shows slow down in energy growth

Eni’s review shows 1.9 percent growth in world oil reserves last year, while natural gas reserves hold steady; Russia leads in gas reserves; Qatar world’ s leading LNG exporter

Kristen Nelson

Petroleum News

While economic growth remained strong last year, high energy prices slowed the increase in global energy consumption, BP said in its Statistical Review of World Energy, released in mid-June.

“Last year showed markets at work. Primary energy consumption growth has decelerated — particularly for fuels which have seen the highest increase in price,” said BP’s chief economist-designate, Christof Rühl.

Eni concurred, attributing a drop of more than 400,000 barrels per day of consumption in industrialized countries to “high crude oil prices and very mild weather in the last months of the year.”

In a release accompanying the review, its 56th, BP said this is the second year in a row that world energy growth slowed.

BP’s review said world primary energy consumption grew 2.4 percent in 2006, just above the 10-year average, but down from 3.2 percent growth in 2005, with growth slowing in all fuels except nuclear.

Eni’s seventh World Oil and Gas Review, released June 20, noted that the worldwide oil production growth rate, up 700,000 barrels per day, was the lowest growth rate since 2002.

“Production in non-OPEC areas did not increase as expected,” Eni said, “mostly because of technical-geological and environmental factors.” While production from Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries increased due to an increase in natural gas liquids, OPEC’s crude oil production was unchanged, Eni said.

Crude consumption grew only 0.7 percent

BP said North American energy consumption growth fell by 0.5 percent, while Asia Pacific had the highest rate of growth, up 4.9 percent. China, which “continued to account for the majority of global energy consumption growth,” had an increase in energy consumption last year of 8.4 percent.

While consumption in energy importing countries slowed, there was “continued strong consumption growth among energy exporters.”

The continuation of high energy prices produced “slower consumption growth amongst the main energy importers,” BP said June 12, particularly in the United States, where primary energy consumption fell by 1 percent compared to 2005, “despite economic growth.”

The growth in crude oil consumption was only 0.7 percent last year, “the weakest growth since 2001 and half the 10-year average,” the review said, with crude oil consumption growing at less than 650,000 barrels per day to reach 83.7 million bpd. Chinese consumption, growing at 6.7 percent, was close to the 10-year average, while oil exporters — the Middle East and the Former Soviet Union — had above-average growth in consumption.

Consumption declined by some 400,000 bpd in OECD countries, the largest decline in Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development consumption since 1983, the review said. Thirty developed-world capitalist countries are OECD members.

There was a new round of production cuts in late 2006 by Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, the review said, with OPEC output rising by 130,000 bpd for the year. Non-OPEC production rose by almost 300,000 bpd. The review said this 2006 rise was stronger than in 2005, but less than half the 10-year average.

Natural gas consumption rose

World consumption of natural gas rose by 2.5 percent in 2006, a rate which the review said was below the 3.4 percent 2005 growth level but close to the 10-year average, BP said. Consumption in the United States and the European Union declined, but was offset by growth in Russia and China.

BP said U.S. natural gas consumption declined for the second year in a row, even though there was an increase in gas used for power generation. The drop in EU consumption was attributed to high prices and warmer-than-normal temperatures. BP said the increase in Russian gas consumption accounted for nearly 40 percent of the global increase, while Chinese consumption grew by more than 20 percent.

“Gas production was up more strongly than it has been for many years, by some 3 percent, led by Russia,” BP said.

Eni said Qatar, with a 15 percent share of global liquefied natural gas exports, overtook Malaysia and Indonesia in 2006 as the world’s leading LNG exporter. “Qatar is investing heavily in LNG and its global market share is set to increase further,” Eni said.

Natural gas reserves, up 0.6 percent, remained essentially stable in 2006, Eni said, while oil reserves, up 1.9 percent, increased slightly.

Russia confirmed its leading role in natural gas, with 26.3 percent of global reserves, Eni said.

The BP Statistical Review of World Energy is available online at www.bp.com/statisticalreview; Eni’s World Oil and Gas Review is available at www.eni.it.



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