The cost of oil has increased due to the blocking of the Suez Canal
According to experts of the Reuters news agency, prices rose due to the blocking of the Suez Canal — the most important transport artery for the passage of tankers with Arab oil to Europe and the United States. Earlier it was reported that a container ship heading from China to Rotterdam under the flag of Panama, one of the largest ships of its class, deviated from its course in a sandstorm and ran aground in the waters of the Suez Canal. More than 100 ships were trapped in the jam. The rescue operation is already underway, but it may last several days.
The US Department of Energy reported that commercial oil reserves in the country increased by 1.9 million barrels over the past week. At the same time, analysts polled by the Bloomberg agency expected an increase in inventories by 2.7 million barrels. U.S. oil production increased by 100,000 barrels per day last week to 11 million barrels. On average, over the past four weeks, oil production in the United States amounted to 10.7 million barrels per day. On March 9, the US Department of Energy raised its forecast for average oil production in the country in 2021 and improved its forecast for production in 2022.
Saudi Arabia is holding talks with the countries of the alliance on the eve of the OPEC+ meeting. The state expresses concern about the prospects for a recovery in demand. The next meeting of the OPEC+ ministerial monitoring committee is scheduled for March 31, and the entire alliance for April 1. They should decide on the level of production for May. A number of countries believe that the current level of oil prices is not sufficient to ease the restrictions. They are based on the risks of a coronavirus pandemic. Others believe that the upcoming meeting should discuss a gradual easing of the terms of the deal, given that US shale oil production is likely to increase on the back of oil prices.