OPEC raises oil demand forecast

Marion Dakers
OIL cartel OPEC said the world will need 100,000 barrels of oil a day more than previously forecast this year, thanks to a stronger than expected global economy supported by government stimuli.

The group, which represents 12 oil-rich countries in the Middle East, Africa and South America, predicted that the world needs an extra 1.1m barrels of oil per day this year during a meeting in Vienna yesterday.

However the cartel said demand growth was likely to tail off towards the end of the year, and that usage in 2011 will grow by 1m barrels of oil a day as expected.

The group stood by its $70 - $80 per barrel price target for the year. North Sea crude futures fell 47 cents to $83.25 a barrel after the meeting.