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Crude oil could soon swing into a deficit that will make next year a difficult one, Goldman Sachs said, as spare production capacity dwindles and underinvestment threatens future supply.
Speaking on the sidelines of an event in Saudi Arabia, Goldman’s top commodity analyst Jeffrey Currie said, as quoted by Bloomberg, that the industry is not spending enough to secure future production and that spare capacity globally is declining.
This could tip the oil market into a serious supply problem next year, but the price for a barrel of Brent could top $100 before then.
According to Currie, rising demand from China and sanctions on Russian oil will contribute to the deficit, which he expects to manifest in the second quarter of this year. In response, producers will tap their spare capacity, leaving it lower than it was before. Eventually, this will lead to a serious imbalance between supply and demand.
“Right now, we’re still balanced to a surplus because China has still yet to fully rebound,” Currie told Bloomberg. “Are we going to run out of spare production capacity? Potentially by 2024 you start to have a serious problem.”
Saudi Arabia’s energy minister has echoed the concern about insufficient spending on future oil production. In fact, Abdulaziz bin Salman has been warning about that for more than a year, and he did so again this weekend.
“All of those so-called sanctions, embargoes, lack of investments, they will convolute into one thing and one thing only, a lack of energy supplies of all kinds when they are most needed,” he said.
Brent crude has been trading at between $75 and $80 a barrel for most of the year so far but Goldman, along with other investment banks, believes it has higher to go. According to Currie, the oil market will swing into a deficit by May.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
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Irina is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing on the oil and gas industry.