Related Articles
Outlook 2017
Forward article link
Share PDF with colleagues

Back in business, probably

Opec will try to restore some control over oil markets in 2017. Quite how remains uncertain

Opec's informal get-together in Algiers in September proved a turning point. There is now consensus within the group on the desire for stable, higher oil prices - if not agreement on the means of achieving them. Opec's main task in 2017 is to restore the mechanism that has delivered oil-supply constraints in the past to full working order. That won't be easy. Few within the group welcome the return of individual production quotas. But, whether that unpopular nomenclature or another form of words is used, producers will have to adhere to some kind of national limit if a deal is to stand any chance of working. Market credibility must now be the priority. Any fudge that establishes a new colle

Also in this section
New crisis and old
22 January 2018
Subdued oil prices and intractable wars cast a shadow over the year
Oil through the worse?
22 January 2018
Opec cut, shale grew, stocks fell, demand soared, prices rose and balance—the oil market's magic word—drew near
Peak demand and oil's long-term trap
19 January 2018
Fixating on the timing of a peak in oil demand is misplaced. Rather, the peak's significance is in shifting the paradigm, from perceived scarcity to perceived abundance. And it poses a problem for low-cost producers