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Oil Prices Surge to Nearly $40 per barrel

Posted May. 09, 2004 20:40,   


Soaring oil prices, close to $40 per barrel, have been continuously increasing.

According to the Korea National Oil Corporation on Saturday, Friday’s futures prices for WTI surged up by $0.68 to $40.05 and ended at $39.93 with a gradual decrease.

Futures prices for WTI peaked at $40.42 on October 11th, 1990, at a time when the first Gulf War was just ahead. Since then, they have remained at under $40.

On Friday in London, futures prices for Brent Oil from the North Sea finished at $37.00 per barrel with a $0.47 increase compared to the previous day.

Spot prices went up as well: WTI increased by $0.58 to $39.98, Brent Oil by $0.27 to $37.24 and Dubai Oil by $0.05 to $34.58, compared to the previous day.

With high expectations that the tight oil supply would continue ahead of the summer holiday season in the U.S., concerns over the lack of oil supplies in the wake of terrorist attacks against crude oil facilities in Iraq and Saudi Arabia seemed to lead to skyrocketing oil prices.

Meanwhile, major oil-producing countries implied that there would be some increase in oil production. Obeid Bin Seif al-Naseri, United Arab Emirates` minister of Oil and Mineral Resources, said on Saturday that we should reconsider our current oil production quota of 23.5 million barrels per day.

Omani Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Mohammed bin Hamad bin Saif al-Ramhi, also said that oil prices of $25 to $30 would be helpful for both oil-producers and consumers. The Iranian representative to OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries) announced that Iran would not oppose it if OPEC decided to increase oil output.

Kwon-Heui Hong Ki-Jeong Ko konihong@donga.com koh@donga.com