BP's chief executive has said that the global oil market is "pretty much in balance", despite industry expectations for it to remain oversupplied well into next year.
Speaking to CNBC at the World Energy Conference in Istanbul, Bob Dudley said: "We look at it on a daily basis and it is pretty much in balance. It is pretty much there, within half a million barrels one way or the other."
Dudley added that because oil stocks remain stubbornly high, the wider market sentiment could take longer to change. The oversupply of crude which sent prices diving in 2014 and 2015 has since been processed into a refined fuel glut.
His position is a sharp contrast to that of the International Energy Agency (IEA) which does not expect the oil market surplus to clear until late 2017.
"Supply will continue to outpace demand at least through the first half of next year … as for the market's return to balance — it looks like we may have to wait a while longer," the IEA said.
Similarly, the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries recently said that there would be a larger surplus than previously expected in the oil market next year.
"It is expected that there will be higher non-Opec production in the second half of 2016 compared to the first half," it said in a monthly report.