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People's Daily Online>>China Business

Global oil prices may see drastic fluctuations

By Dong Wei (China Youth Daily)

08:15, December 14, 2011

Edited and translated by People's Daily Online

According to research findings released by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, global oil prices will fluctuate around the benchmark scope of 79 U.S. dollars to 90 U.S. dollars in 2012.

The oil prices will usually return this interval after a single deviation unless a significant permanent change in the world's economic and political structure occurs, according to the academy.

Domestic demand for oil is increasing year by year due to the vigorous development of China’s economy. However, domestic oil production is not keeping up with the increasing demands and is even stagnating. Therefore, China has to rely on crude oil imports to meet its demands. The ratio of dependence on foreign crude oil import was above 50 percent in 2009 and will probably reach 55 percent this year.

According to this research, global crude oil prices will be subject to the following factors in 2012: political configuration in the Middle East, the E.U. debt crisis, economic downturn in the United States and the prospects of emerging economies.

The political changes in the Middle East, the world's oil depot, will undoubtedly affect oil prices. Although the Libyan war has ended, it is still unknown whether the domino effect from the unrest will end in this area.

As to global crude oil prices, the increasingly fierce E.U. debt crisis must affect oil demand. The prices may go down further if the risks in finance spread to economic entities, causing the downturn of the European economy and slowing the pace of the global economic recovery.

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