LONDON: Oil prices fell on Wednesday as a market surplus forecast by the International Energy Age­ncy (IEA) outweighed concern over disruptions to Libya’s crude output.

Brent crude was down 48 cents, or 0.7 per cent, at $64.11 a barrel by 1311 GMT. West Texas Inte­rmediate fell 57 cents, or 1pc, to $57.81.

The head of the IEA, Fatih Birol, said he expects the market to be in surplus by 1 million barrels per day (bpd) in the first half of this year.

“I see an abundance of energy supply in terms of oil and gas,” Birol told the Reuters Global Markets Forum on Tuesday while atte­nding the World Eco­nomic Forum meeting in Davos.

“It’s the reason that recent incidents we have seen – with the Iranian general killed, Libya unrest — didn’t boost international oil prices,” Birol added, referring to the US killing of an Iranian commander and retaliation by Tehran that boosted prices briefly this month.

Published in Dawn, January 23rd, 2020

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