US could become a top 10 oil exporter in three years
U.S. oil production is booming. The next step: conquering the export market.This has strategic implications far beyond OPEC. It acts as a counterweight to the Russian oil business and creates a more dependable supply for US allies in Europe and elsewhere. As important as the oil exports from the US are, the export of LNG to Europe may be of greater importance by becoming an alternative supplier to Russia which has used its market dominance to extort European countries.
Increased shale production will transform the U.S. into one of the world's top oil exporters in just a few years, according to a new forecast by the consultancy PIRA Energy Group.
PIRA estimates that American crude exports will grow to 2.25 million barrels a day by 2020, a four-fold increase from 2016.
The boom would put the U.S. in roughly the same league as major oil exporters including the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait.
"In the years ahead, these developments position the U.S. to potentially be one of the 10 largest exporters of crude oil in the world," wrote analyst Jenna Delaney.
The major increase in supply would further undermine the strength of OPEC, which was exporting an average of 25 million barrels a day in 2016.
Saudi Arabia topped the cartel's list of exporters last year, sending of 7.5 million barrels abroad each day.
The U.S. vaulting into the top ranks of exporters would have been unthinkable even a few years ago.