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Thu 12 Feb 2009 05:36 PM

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Oil demand to fall by 1.5 mln bpd in 2009 - energy consultancy

Wood Mackenzie sees developed nations' demand growth slowing sharply.

World oil demand is set to fall by 1.5m barrels per day (bpd) in 2009, as a deep global recession curbs consumption in industrialised and developing economies, Wood Mackenzie energy consultancy said on Thursday.The consultancy sees demand growth slowing sharply in countries outside the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), despite rising by 1.5m bpd in 2008.

"Non-OECD demand was much less affected in 2008," John Waterlow, principal demand analyst at Wood Mackenzie, said. "However, economic recession is now affecting demand and growth is expected to slow to just 200,000 bpd in 2009."

Demand in the OECD is seen falling by 1.7m bpd in 2009, as developed economies are most exposed to the recession.

Wood Mackenzie sees the world economy contracting by 0.61 percent in 2009, taking a pessimistic view on the outlook for emerging economies, especially the former Soviet Union and Asia.

The spike in oil prices to almost $150 a barrel last summer was based, in part, on the growth in fuel consumption from then rapidly developing economies such as China and India.

Wood Mackenzie sees oil demand shrinking by far more than the International Energy Agency (IEA) - the adviser to 28 industrialised nations - who on Wednesday said oil demand would fall by less than one million bpd this year.

The Paris-based agency bases its view on the International Monetary Funds outlook for the global economy, which still predicts the global economy will grow slightly in 2009.

The IEA expects demand will grow by 500,000 bpd in non-OECD economies this year.

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