US to overtake Saudi Arabia as crude oil producer this year - IEA

The US is set to overtake Saudi Arabia as the world’s number two oil producer after Russia this year, the International Energy Agency said on Friday. It cited increased drilling by shale companies, which have been attracted by rising prices, AFP said. “This year promises to be a record-setting one for the US,” the IEA wrote in its monthly market report. Crude production of 9.9 million barrels per day (bpd) in the US is now at its highest level in nearly 50 years, “putting it neck-and-neck with Saudi Arabia, the world’s second-largest crude producer after Russia,” the IEA said. “Growth should see the US hit historic highs above 10 million bpd, overtaking Saudi Arabia and rivaling Russia” during the course of 2018 - provided OPEC/non-OPEC restraints remain in place, it added.