Research Briefing | Jul 1, 2021

MENA | OPEC+ meeting, Saudi jobless rate, Lebanon fuel prices

 OPEC+ meeting, Saudi jobless rate, Lebanon fuel prices

OPEC+ countries could agree an oil output increase of 2m b/d between August and December against the backdrop of rising oil prices. But while demand is seen reaching pre-pandemic levels in early-2022, the group will be keen to limit downside to oil prices by extending supply growth caps beyond April 2022.

What you will learn:

  • The Saudi unemployment rate edged down to 11.7% in Q1, a 5-year low. Female employment rate surged to 78.8% from 75.6% in Q4 2020, though there was a decline in their participation in the workforce, showing the ongoing challenge of meeting Vision 2030 targets.
  • The reduction in fuel subsidies in Lebanon and subsequent 35% hike in petrol prices will exacerbate pressure on consumers even if it temporarily alleviates fuel shortages. Only some households will receive support to compensate.
  • It seems likely OPEC+ countries will taper oil production cuts starting in August in the context of the rally in oil prices and demand optimism.
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