Dateline 2017-12-20, MD:
The year 2017 saw some improvements in the oil and gas industry as efforts by the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its alliance to readjust the supply-demand equilibrium began to bear fruit.
The move, which started in December last year and the first deal reached between OPEC and major non-OPEC producers since 2001, involved a reduction of 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd) within the 13 OPEC members, excluding Libya and Nigeria.
Meantime, 11 non-OPEC countries — Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bolivia, Brunei, Equatorial Guinea, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Mexico, Oman, Sudan, and South Sudan — made commitments to cut production by 1.8 million bpd among them.
Following the deal, the international benchmark Brent crude prices have somewhat improved, starting the year at US$56.82 per barrel before retracting to US$44.82 on June 21, and rebounding to US$64.69 on Dec 11 following the decision by OPEC and its non-member alliance on Nov 30 to extend production cuts for the entire 2018.