Wednesday, October 15, 2008

How will oil-producing states fare with il prices at 13 month low?

AFP: "The price of oil slumped below 72 dollars on Wednesday, its lowest level for more than 13 months, as recession fears raised concerns about a prolonged drop in energy demand, analysts said. U.S. crude was down $3.76 a barrel at $74.87 by 11:04 a.m. EDT. It touched a session low of $74.62, its lowest since September last year."

Of course that's still pretty high.

Back on September 21, based on a Dow Jones Newswire story, Gulf Times reported:
Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest oil exporter, will need crude prices to remain above $49 a barrel to avoid a fiscal deficit, a senior International Monetary Fund official has said. “If it goes below that level we would start seeing a fiscal account deficit,” Mohsin Khan, director of Middle East and central Asia at the IMF, told Dow Jones Newswires.
...
“Saudi Arabia’s break-even price is the highest among the Gulf Co-operation Council Countries because they are spending on a lot of projects right now, and oil money is used to fund these projects,” he said.
...
“The UAE will have a fiscal balance at an oil price of $23, if it goes below they would run a deficit. For Qatar, the break-even price is $24 a barrel,” Khan said. Kuwait’s break-even price is $33 a barrel, he added.

The figures, to be published in the IMF’s next regional outlook for the Middle East and Central Asia, also show that other countries in the region are already running a fiscal deficit with current oil price levels.

“Iran’s break-even price is $90 a barrel, and that is a big issue in Iran right now,” Khan said.

“If prices dip below $90 a barrel, and we have seen it touch $89 earlier this week, then they would have to tighten their public expenditure policy, and probably cut subsidies, which would be an issue for the government there – the public would not be content,” he said.

Iraq has the highest break-even price in the region, according to the IMF figures. The war-torn country needs prices above $110 a barrel to balance its books.
Speaking of Iran, here's how low prices look from Venezuela.

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