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Middle East Oil Demand in November 2014

Source: OPEC 11/16/2014, Location: Middle East

Middle East oil demand in September 2014 offers a two-fold picture. In Saudi Arabia, oil demand grew strongly, by a remarkable 0.28 mb/d, and was characterized by substantial increases in all products. The only exception was direct crude burning. Saudi demand was particularly strong for residual fuel oil, gasoline and gasoil, in line with the healthy economy, and the growing industrial and transportation sectors. However, oil demand in Iraq declined significantly for another month – the fourth in a row – with drops in oil requirements y-o-y. Iraqi total oil demand dipped by more than 18%, or 0.14 mb/d, y-o-y in September with total oil demand in absolute terms just around 0.60 mb/d after reaching 0.75 mb/d at the end of 2013. Diesel oil, jet/kerosene and gasoline declined sharply by 0.07 mb/d (37%), 0.05 mb/d (92%) and 0.03 mb/d (24%), respectively.

The only exception is direct crude burning for electricity generation, which increased strongly during September and offset declines in other product categories. The impact of geopolitical issues within Iraq is obviously influencing oil demand negatively, which is imposing higher downside risks for oil demand growth for the rest of 2014 and 2015. For 2014, Middle East oil demand is expected to grow by 0.31 mb/d, while oil demand in 2015 is projected to increase by 0.30 mb/d.

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