…the only continent where residual fuel oil demand will not decline
Demand for refined products in Africa is projected to remain relatively strong over the next 25 years, at 1.7% per annum, on average, according to a recent report by the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).
“However, because of a relatively low starting base, the increase in volume terms is only 2.5MMBOPD”, the organization reports in the World Oil Outlook 2014.“The greatest part of the increase relates to gas, oil/diesel and gasoline which will continue to be the key products in Africa”, the report says.
The WOO 2014 sees demand for gas, oil/diesel expanding by 900,000BOPD, between 2013 and 2040, because of its use in various growing sectors. Combined with the growth of jet and domestic kerosene, middle distillates constitute more than 40% of the region’s total demand increase.
The second largest volume increase in Africa’s demand relates to ‘other products’. These are seen increasing by 600,000BOPD between 2013 and 2040. “A significant part of this demand stems from the strong need to expand road infrastructure and, hence,the potential for additional bitumen demand. The expansion of the refining sector,especially in the second part of the forecast period, will contribute to demand growth in this category and will provide additional support to fuel oil demand too”. Demand for this product will also increase in the electricity generation sector. “Therefore, Africa is the only region where residual fuel oil demand will not decline throughout the entire period, despite the effect of IMO regulations on marine bunkers.Besides gasoline, whose consumption is projected to rise by 500,000BOPD over the forecast period, other light products are also expected to expand, albeit by significantly smaller increments”.
In respect to Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG), around 90% of demand in Africa is in the residential sector, mainly for cooking. It is unlikely that this demand pattern will change soon, providing the grounds for future increases. Another specific characteristic of African product demand is its very small naphtha consumption, so that most local naphtha production is exported. Therefore, the combined demand increase for these two products is less than 300,000BOPD over the entire forecast period.