Fitch: $ 55 average price per barrel in 2017

Journal News May 27, 2017

Baghdad - Agencies

The agreement reached by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) will lead to a reduction in crude stocks, but shale oil will remain an important factor in the long term, the Fitch Ratings Agency said.

"OPEC's decision to extend production cuts by 9 months should provide some support for oil prices at an average year to date," she said.

The IAEA warned that the oil surplus could come back in 2018 if the agreement was not extended again as production continues to start on new projects as US oil production is set to grow.

She said she expected average annual oil prices to stay this year at about $ 50 to $ 55 a barrel for Brent, taking into account the spectacular growth of US shale oil production.

The agency said its main expectation is a gradual recovery of the market. Global crude prices will lead the Brent mix in the market to reach mid-$ 50 a barrel in 2018 and around $ 60 in 2019.