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The American Petroleum Institute reported a 62-percent annual increase in oil and gas drilling in the second quarter of 2017 in the United States. For oil, well completions shot up by 81 percent in April-June 2017 from a year earlier, according to API estimates, and also rose by 19 percent from the first quarter of the year. Gas well completions were estimated to be 41 percent higher in the second quarter of 2017 than in the same period a year earlier.
The data reflects EIA reports of rising U.S. oil and gas production and an intensification of this rise. For the first quarter of the year, the API reported a 35-percent increase in oil and gas well completions, which was not a huge surprise, given that these completions in Q1 2016 were down by 59% on an annual basis.
According to EIA data, crude oil production in the U.S. averaged 9.397 million bpd as of July 7th, steadily rising over the last few months. The figure exceeded imports by almost 2 million bpd: the latter stood at 7.61 million barrels at the end of the same week, while exports of crude oil stood at 918,000 bpd.
Energy consultancy PIRA Energy earlier this week forecast that the United States could enter the top 10 of global oil exporters in a few years, with daily export rates hitting 2.25 million barrels by 2020. This, CNN noted in a report on the forecast, will bring the U.S. close to major exporters including Kuwait and the UAE. The increase in production, PIRA analyst Jenna Delaney said, will come mostly on the back of the boost in shale oil output.
Last month, the International Energy Agency estimated that oil production in the U.S. will rise by an average daily of 430,000 barrels, contributing to a 700,000-bpd output rise among non-OPEC producers. In 2018, non-OPEC production will grow by 1.5 million barrels daily, of which 780,000 bpd attributable to the U.S.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
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Irina is a writer for the U.S.-based Divergente LLC consulting firm with over a decade of experience writing on the oil and gas industry.