Continuous decline in Japanese oil product consumption.
Global oil product consumption continued to grow in 2017, driven by an increasing demand from transport and petrochemical industry. Oil demand dynamics in transportation is in line with the development of the worldwide vehicle fleet that is increasingly oriented toward more consuming vehicles (SUVs). This trend, coupled with the economic growth, offset the efficiency gains posted since 2005 in the United States and Europe and oil demand slightly increased in these two markets in 2017. Petrochemical oil demand is mainly linked to global economic growth.
Asian countries, which accounted for most of the global increase, posted a steady growth in oil consumption, especially in China, India (above 5% in both countries), Indonesia, Thailand and South Korea.
Despite the recovery in Brazil, oil consumption decreased in Latin America for the third consecutive year, as demand contracted again in Mexico and in Argentina.
Oil product demand also declined in Russia and in Saudi Arabia in 2017.
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Several Eastern Mediterranean governments - Cyprus, Greece, Israel, Italy, Jordan and Palestine - have agreed to establish the Eastern Mediterranean Gas Forum, a regional gas market that would optimise the resource development of its members, rationalise the cost of the transportation infrastructure, offer competitive trade prices and improve mutual trade relations. Other countries may join the forum later and the institution will be also open to monitoring by international and regional organisations.
The Iraqi government expects to raise production from the southern Majnoon oilfield near Basrah from the current 240,000 bbl/d to 290,000 bbl/d by the end of 2019 and then to 450,000 bbl/d by the end of 2021. In 2019, US$7bn will be invested for the development of five oil fields in the Basra region, of which 10% (US$700m) for the Majnoon field. Besides, it has also outlined plans to develop a new offshore oil export pipeline with a capacity to transport 700,000 bbl/d by the end of 2019.
The Tunisian government expects the country to produce approximately 25% of its energy output with renewable energy projects by 2020. New projects - mainly wind and solar - with a combined capacity of 1,000 MW worth TND2.5bn (US$836m) should be commissioned by 2020.
According to the Caspian Pipeline Consortium (CPC), crude oil exports via the CPC pipeline rose by 11% in 2018, reaching 61.1 Mt. Exports from Kazakhstan accounted for most of this figure (89%) - with three Kazakhstan oil fields making up the majority of the exports (28.7 Mt came from Tengiz, 13.2 Mt from Kashagan and 10.3 Mt from Karachaganak), while the remainder came from Russia.