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Are high oil prices profitable for OPEC in the long run?

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  • Finn Roar Aune
  • Solveig Glomsrød
  • Lars Lindholt
  • Knut Einar Rosendahl

    ()
    (Statistics Norway)

Abstract

High oil prices are favourable for OPEC in the short run, but may undermine its future revenues. We search for the optimal oil price level for the producer group, using a partial equilibrium model for the oil market. The model explicitly accounts for reserves, development and production in 4 field categories across 13 regions. Oil companies may invest in new field development or alternatively in improved oil recovery in the decline phase of fields in production. Non-OPEC production is profit-driven, whereas OPEC meets the residual call on OPEC oil at a pre-specified oil price, while maintaining a surplus capacity. According to our results, sustained high oil prices stimulate Non-OPEC production, but its remaining reserves gradually diminish despite new discoveries. Oil demand is only slightly affected by higher prices. Thus, OPEC is able to keep and eventually increase its current market share beyond 2010 even with oil prices around $30 per barrel (2000-$). In fact, an oil price around $40 seems to be profitable for OPEC, even if long-term revenues are not discounted. Sensitivity analyses show that even with many factors working jointly in OPEC's disfavour, the optimal oil price seems to be at least $25. Thus, for OPEC there is a trade-off between high prices and high market share in the short to medium term, but not in the long term. For OECD countries, on the other hand, there is a clear trade-off between low oil prices and low import dependence.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Research Department of Statistics Norway in its series Discussion Papers with number 416.

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Date of creation: Apr 2005
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Handle: RePEc:ssb:dispap:416

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Keywords: Oil market; oil price; market power; equilibrium model;

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References

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  1. Lester C. Hunt & Yasushi Ninomiya, 2003. "Unravelling Trends and Seasonality: A Structural Time Series Analysis of Transport Oil Demand in the UK and Japan," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 3), pages 63-96.
  2. Elin Berg & Snorre Kverndokk & Knut Einar Rosendahl, 1996. "Market Power, International CO2 Taxation and Petroleum Wealth," Discussion Papers 170, Research Department of Statistics Norway.
  3. Sabine Bockem, 2004. "Cartel formation and oligopoly structure: a new assessment of the crude oil market," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(12), pages 1355-1369.
  4. Pindyck, Robert S, 1978. "Gains to Producers from the Cartelization of Exhaustible Resources," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 60(2), pages 238-51, May.
  5. Ringlund, Guro Bornes & Rosendahl, Knut Einar & Skjerpen, Terje, 2008. "Does oilrig activity react to oil price changes An empirical investigation," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 371-396, March.
  6. Salant, Stephen W, 1976. "Exhaustible Resources and Industrial Structure: A Nash-Cournot Approach to the World Oil Market," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(5), pages 1079-93, October.
  7. Horn, Manfred, 2004. "OPEC's optimal crude oil price," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 269-280, January.
  8. Berg, Elin & Kverndokk, Snorre & Rosendahl, Knut Einar, 2002. "Oil Exploration under Climate Treaties," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 44(3), pages 493-516, November.
  9. Jean-Marc Burniaux & John P. Martin & Giuseppe Nicoletti & Joaquim Oliveira Martins, 1992. "The Costs of Reducing CO2 Emissions: A Technical Manual," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 115, OECD Publishing.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Lars Lindholt, 2008. "Maximizing the discounted tax revenue in a mature oil province," Discussion Papers 544, Research Department of Statistics Norway.
  2. Aune, Finn Roar & Mohn, Klaus & Osmundsen, Petter & Rosendahl, Knut Einar, 2009. "Financial market pressures, tacit collusion and oil price formation," UiS Working Papers in Economics and Finance 2009/14, University of Stavanger.
  3. Knut Einar Rosendahl & Eirik Lund Sagen, 2009. "The Global Natural Gas Market: Will Transport Cost Reductions Lead to Lower Prices?," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 2), pages 17-40.
  4. Lindholt, Lars & Glomsrød, Solveig, 2012. "The Arctic: No big bonanza for the global petroleum industry," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 1465-1474.
  5. Finn Roar Aune & Gang Liu & Knut Einar Rosendahl & Eirik Lund Sagen, 2009. "Subsidising carbon capture. Effects on energy prices and market shares in the power market," Discussion Papers 595, Research Department of Statistics Norway.
  6. Jakobsson, Kristofer & Söderbergh, Bengt & Snowden, Simon & Aleklett, Kjell, 2014. "Bottom-up modeling of oil production: A review of approaches," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 113-123.
  7. Finn Roar Aune, Knut Einar Rosendahl and Eirik Lund Sagen, 2009. "Globalisation of Natural Gas Markets - Effects on Prices and Trade Patterns," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Special I), pages 39-54.

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