Oil prices rose today to fresh multi-year highs and were set for their third weekly jump on expectations of a recovery in fuel demand in the US, Europe and China as rising vaccination rates lead to an easing of pandemic curbs.
Brent crude futures edged up 21 cents to $72.73 a barrel today, after closing at their highest since May 2019 yesterday.
US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were up 15 cents to $70.44 a barrel, a day after their highest close since October 2018.
US investment bank Goldman Sachs expects Brent crude prices to reach $80 per barrel this summer as vaccination rollouts boost global economic activity.
The International Energy Agency said in its monthly report that OPEC+ oil producers would need to boost output to meet demand set to recover to pre-pandemic levels by the end of 2022.
"OPEC+ needs to open the taps to keep the world oil markets adequately supplied," the Paris-based energy watchdog said.
It said that rising demand and countries' short-term policies were at odds with the IEA's call to end new oil, gas and coal funding.
"In 2022 there is scope for the 24-member OPEC+ group, led by Saudi Arabia and Russia, to ramp up crude supply by 1.4 million barrels per day (bpd) above its July 2021-March 2022 target," the IEA said.
Data showing road traffic returning to pre-Covid-19 levels in North America and most of Europe was encouraging, ANZ Research analysts said in a note.
"Even the jet fuel market is showing signs of improvement, with flights in Europe rising 17% over the past two weeks, according to Eurocontrol," ANZ analysts said.