OPEC 2010 exports, GDP rise, but less than oil price

LONDON - OPEC exports jumped in value by 18 per cent in 2010 year-on-year, while the producers’ collective GDP climbed 11 per cent, according to their latest data, before a further rally this year that could provide an even bigger boost.

By Barbara Lewis (Reuters)

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Published: Wed 20 Jul 2011, 11:31 PM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 4:37 AM

The gains, announced in OPEC’s Annual Statistical Bulletin on Tuesday, followed a GDP decline of nearly 33 per cent in 2009 after oil had plummeted to less than $40 a barrel from the July 2008 all-time high of more than $147.

Improved cash flow is a big advantage for producer countries, especially after they increased social spending this year. But the economic gains were mostly less significant than the oil price rally, and analysts were unimpressed by continued over-dependency on a single source of revenue.

“Economic growth is not meaningful if the oil price is the only driver,” said Bill Farren-Price of Petroleum Policy Intelligence.

As exports climbed 18 per cent in value to just over $1 trillion, import costs increased eight per cent to nearly $620 billion. As a result, the current account surplus increased a whopping 79 per cent to $206 billion.

In 2010 Brent crude rose by 28 per cent to an average of just above $80 a barrel from $62.67 for 2009, according to Reuters data. This year so far, the oil price has averaged $111.70, up 39 per cent on 2010.

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