There has been a familiar pattern to recent long-term oil market outlooks from organizations including Opec and the IEA. Every report projects that Opec’s market share will rise at some point in the future as higher-cost non-Opec production falls back. But the date when this might happen keeps receding into the distance.

Last week’s flagship ‘World Oil Outlook’ from Opec itself projected that demand for Opec oil would fall further from recent record lows over the coming years. In order to balance the market Opec members would have to limit their 2024 output to a whopping 3.8mn b/d below 2018 levels (MEES, 8 November); the previous year’s report projected a fall of just 0.2mn b/d over the same period. Opec’s global market share would fall from 36.9% to 31.2% over the same period. (CONTINUED - 1368 WORDS)