Prospects For Oil Production Running faster to stand still

• I n the Reference Scenario, world oil production (not including processing gains) rises by 26%, from 82.3 mb/d in 2007 to 103.8 mb/d in 2030. The share of OPEC countries in global output increases from 44% in 2007 to 51% in 2030. Saudi Arabia remains the world's largest producer throughout the projection period, its output climbing from 10.2 mb/d to 15.6 mb/d.

• Worldwide, conventional crude oil production increases only modestly between 2007 and 2030 - by 5 mb/d - as almost all the additional capacity from new oilfields is offset by the decline in output at existing fields. Output from known oilfields that are already being developed or are awaiting development expands through to 2020, but then begins to drop, as few such fields are left to be brought into production and many of them enter their decline phase. Fields that are yet to be found account for about a quarter of total crude oil production by 2030.

• T he bulk of the net increase in total oil production comes from natural gas liquids (NGLs), driven by the relatively rapid expansion in gas supply, and from non-conventional resources and technologies. Enhanced oil recovery, predominately from CO2 injection, makes a growing contribution.

• T he regional breakdown of world oil production does not change dramatically over the projection period, but there are some important country-level changes. Saudi Arabia sees the largest incremental increase in oil production, followed by Canada. Brazil and Kazakhstan see large increases in output, while production in Russia falls. NGLs in Saudi Arabia and crude oil in Iraq dominate the increase in OPEC output.

• N on-OPEC production of crude oil and NGLs declines from 44.8 mb/d in 2007 to 43.5 mb/d in 2015 and then falls further to 42.9 mb/d in 2030 in the Reference Scenario. Non-OPEC non-conventional oil production, in contrast, rises from 1.5 mb/d in 2007 to 7.9 mb/d in 2030.

• OPEC crude oil and NGL production increases from 35.9 mb/d in 2007 to 44.0 mb/d in 2015 and to 52.0 mb/d in 2030, on the assumption that there are no major disruptions in supply and that the requisite investment occurs. The increase in crude oil and NGL output comes mainly from onshore fields: offshore production falls after 2015, despite rising output in Angola and Nigeria. The average size of onshore fields in Middle East OPEC countries declines over the Outlook period, especially after 2015.

• T hese projections call for huge investments to explore for and develop more reserves, mainly to combat decline at existing fields. An additional 64 mb/d of gross capacity - the equivalent of six times that of Saudi Arabia today - needs to be brought on stream between 2007 and 2030. A faster rate of decline than projected here would sharply increase upstream investment needs and oil prices.

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