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In the main forward-looking scenario, the OPEC expects global economy to grow 5.5 percent in 2021 and almost 4 percent in 2022.
On Tuesday, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) published this year's edition of the World Oil Outlook 2045 (WOO), a report that estimates that global oil consumption will reach 104.4 million barrels per day (mbd) in 2026, which implies an increase of 13.8 mbd compared to 2020.
These calculations, however, are subject to multiple uncertainty factors such as the evolution of the COVID-19 pandemic and the progress of actions against climate change. In the main forward-looking scenario, the OPEC report expects the global economy to grow 5.5 percent in 2021, close to 4 percent in 2022, and slightly more than 3 percent in the following years.
Between 2020 and 2045, global GDP is projected to rise from around US$125 trillion to almost US$270 trillion. "China and India combined are expected to account for 37 percent of global GDP in 2045. The OPEC countries is set to account for slightly less, at 34 percent."
In that year, the planet will have 9.5 billion people who will consume 108 mbd of crude oil, although the diffusion of energy efficient technologies could reduce the oil demand by over 8 mbd. Despite this, oil "will continue to be the fuel with the largest share in the world energy basket."
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In analyzing the factors that could influence future oil demand, OPEC highlights the trends of change in the economically active population and the aging population.
"The global working-age population (15–64) is projected to rise by around 900 million throughout the projection period, driven by non-OECD countries. However, the relative share of the global working-age population to the world's total population is anticipated to drop from 65 percent in 2019 to 63 percent in 2045."
Energy consumption will also be boosted by a strong trend towards urbanization as 66 percent of the world’s population is expected to live in urban areas in that year.