IEA sees oil markets tightening toward end of 2018: Birol

FILE PHOTO: Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency, speaks with the media during the International Energy Forum (IEF) in New Delhi, India, April 11, 2018. REUTERS/Altaf Hussain/File photo

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Global oil markets could tighten toward the end of this year due to strong demand and uncertainty of production in some oil producing nations, the head of the International Energy Agency said.

“Definitely there are some worries that oil markets can tighten towards the end of this year and as major oil importing countries India and other countries need to be ready,” IEA’s Fatih Birol told Reuters on Wednesday after a meeting with India’s Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan.

He said oil markets could tighten due to “very strong demand growth and a major problem is that Venezuelan production is collapsing”.

Venezuelan production has halved in the last two years, he said, adding there was also “fragility of production” in countries including those in the Middle East.

Birol on Monday told Reuters that Venezuela’s oil production was expected to slide further after falling by half in recent years.

Reporting by Nidhi Verma; Editing by Malini Menon