by Jerome a Paris
Sat Jul 2nd, 2005 at 07:42:36 AM EST
Rising cost of oil counters Africa debt relief
The debt deal agreed by Group of Eight finance ministers last month, is set to save sub-Saharan African nations about $1bn (€840m) a year. But International Energy Agency officials believe the rise in crude prices will cost the region an additional $10.5bn a year in oil imports.
Agency officials estimate the oil import bill of sub-Saharan Africa will double to about $20bn on the back of crude prices of more than $55 a barrel. As a result, the increase in oil costs “is going to be greater than the debt relief given to sub-Saharan countries this year”, said Fatih Birol, chief economist at the IEA.
The countries of sub-Saharan Africa are among the world's poorest. They depend heavily on imported oil and use it inefficiently. Mr Birol said the region required 80 per cent more oil than a developed country to produce the same unit of gross domestic product.
But hey, Blair got his headlines.
Previous countdown diaries:
Countdown to 100$ oil (5) - OPEC inexorably raises floor price
Countdown to 100$ oil (4) - WSJ wingnuts vs China
Countdown to 100$ oil (3) - industry is beginning to suffer
Countdown to 100$ oil (2) - the views of the elites on peak oil
Countdown to 100$ oil (1)