Economists at the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries said they expected more oil from non-member states, with the United States leading the pack.
OPEC in its monthly market report for February raised its forecast for supply from producers outside the group by 250,000 barrels per day for an expected full-year average of 1.4 million barrels per day. Most of those new barrels will come from the United States.
OPEC economists attributed the increase in U.S. oil production to steady gains in the price of crude oil since the middle of last year. That’s triggered more work in exploration and production, not only in the U.S. shale oil sector, but also in the deep U.S. waters in the Gulf of Mexico.
By the second half of the year, OPEC said it expected total U.S. oil production to slow down or even stall. Nevertheless, OPEC economists raised the growth forecast from the United States by 150,000 barrels per day. Last year, more than 80 percent of the production growth from the United States came from shale oil deposits in the Lower 48.
At more than 10 million barrels per day, the United States is now rivaling Saudi Arabia, the de facto leader of OPEC, in terms of production…