Saudi Oil Exports Flatline as Asian Demand Stutters

From Arabian Business

OPEC heavyweight Saudi Arabia is expected to keep oil output steady throughout the second quarter as more high pace demand in Asia, its biggest oil export market, has yet to materialise.

At the start of this month, the world’s top exporter was poised to raise oil supply to meet higher requirements in Asia. With Europe mired in debt and the United States using more of its own oil, Asia is the primary target for producers in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

But three weeks on and the outlook for growth in top energy consumer China and elsewhere looks decidedly uncertain, Europe’s recession has deepened and Brent crude has lost 10 percent of its value to trade below $100 a barrel.

Sources familiar with Saudi oil policy said demand for crude from outside the kingdom was expected to remain flat through June, although it could burn more crude domestically to cover an increase in power generation.

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