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SPIEGEL Interview with IAE Head Nobuo Tanaka: 'We Live in an Era of High Energy Prices' - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News

After rising for months, oil prices are now on the decline. SPIEGEL spoke with the head of the International Energy Agency about the future of oil prices, the growing importance of nuclear power and the quantity of oil left in the world.

SPIEGEL: Mr. Tanaka, do you know what your organization predicted the price of oil would be in 2010 in a study conducted three years ago?

Tanaka: No, I wasn't in office at the time. Tell me.

SPIEGEL: It was $35 a barrel.

Tanaka: Then we must have been very wrong.

 Demand for oil is falling, as is the price. But for how much longer? SPIEGEL: Why are all observers of the oil market, not just the International Energy Agency (IEA), so far off with their estimate of price developments?

Tanaka: The demand for crude oil has grown much more quickly than expected, especially in emerging markets like China and India. At the same time, on the demand side the producing countries have not expanded their production capacities sufficiently. The market has become extraordinarily tight as a result.

SPIEGEL: You're making it a little too easy for yourself. The incorrect estimates are also based on the fact that there is little reliable data in this market, especially on oil production.

Tanaka: The market clearly lacks the necessary transparency; otherwise it would work better. That's why we are currently working intensively on a major study on the productiveness of more than 700 of the world's most important oil fields, which will be published in November. We want to find out how large the potential is, but also the extent to which production is declining in individual fields. I too am very curious to see the results.

by Fran on Tue Aug 12th, 2008 at 03:21:10 PM EST
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International Energy Agency - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Only OECD member countries can become members of the IEA.

Norway aside, no IEA member is an oil exporter. It's useful for OECD countries to have an agreement and an agency that requires stockpiling of oil. But let's not presume that the IEA means much otherwise, or has special insight insight into the demand or production trends of the countries outside the rich west.
by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Tue Aug 12th, 2008 at 06:21:26 PM EST
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