BY EMEKA EJERE

The easing of lockdown by more countries and output cuts agreed by OPEC+ and other top oil-producing countries have continued to affect the oil price positively.

This has seen oil market recovery continuing on Tuesday, with oil prices maintaining the upward swing as demand started improving and some economies began to open up.

The Nigerian headline crude, Bonny light, sold for $23.24 per barrel on Tuesday, May 5, 2020, compared to the $18.94 per barrel which it sold for the previous day. This represents a whopping 22.7% increase, the highest in about 3 weeks.

Also, in a related development, the Brent crude surged to $31.06 per barrel, while the American WTI crude is selling at $24.69 per barrel. Oil prices have been on an upward swing, just as the market expects improvement based on the hope of output cuts by OPEC+ and oil-producing countries, and a gradual increase in oil demand globally.

A monitored report from oilprice.com, revealed that oil demand has risen by 2.5 million barrels per day from its low point in mid-April 2020. An American Petroleum (API) report showed that the crude oil inventory was expected to rise to 8.44 million barrels just last week as against the 9.98 million barrels that were expected to be achieved a week before then.

The oil market has been in turmoil following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic and the attendant global lockdown as part of measures to contain the disease.

This had led to an unprecedented crash in crude oil prices which seriously affected the Federal Government’s 2020 budget implementation. In response to that, the oil benchmark for the 2020 budget had to be reviewed downwards from $57 per barrel to $30 per barrel.