Virus sparks record drop in energy investment: IEA

Updated May 28 2020

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While renewables are likely to fare better than oil, any swift economic recovery could create a global fuel crunch, says International Energy Agency. — AP/File
While renewables are likely to fare better than oil, any swift economic recovery could create a global fuel crunch, says International Energy Agency. — AP/File

PARIS: The energy industry is set to suffer a record drop in investment due to the coronavirus fallout, the IEA said on Wednesday, and while renewables are likely to fare better than oil, any swift economic recovery could create a global fuel crunch.

In its annual report on energy investments, the Paris-based International Energy Agency (IEA) estimated the plunge will be of the order of one-fifth from 2019 levels, or almost $400 billion, as firms slash spending amid slumping demand for energy.

Shale oil producers that catapulted the United States to the world’s top crude nation stand to suffer the worst decline, the IEA said.

“All the energy sectors — oil, gas, renewables — everything is affected but the biggest impact is on shale oil,” the agency’s director Fatih Birol told AFP in an interview.

“Total oil investments we expect to decline one third this year whereas the shale industry will see a decline of about 50 per cent.”

Published in Dawn, May 28th, 2020