Shale crude oil pipeline Paul Edmondson/ZumaPress

النفط والحالة المعتادة الجديدة

لاجونا بيتش ــ مرة أخرى، كانت أسعار النفط تتجه نحو الهبوط، حيث تراجع سعر برميل الخام الأميركي مؤخراً إلى 42 دولارا ــ وهو أدنى مستوى منذ مارس/آذار 2009، عندما كانت الأزمة المالية العالمية على أشدها. وفي حين كان الهبوط الحاد الذي سجلته الأسعار العام الماضي متأثراً بشدة باثنتين من صدمات العرض الكبرى، فإن الانخفاض الحالي أيضاً كان راجعاً إلى بُعد مهم يتعلق بالطلب.

ومن ناحية أخرى، بدأت أسواق النفط تكتشف كيف قد تكون الحال عندما تعمل في ظل نظام مُنتِج جديد متحكم: الولايات المتحدة. ونتيجة لهذا، أصبحت عملية تكوين الأسعار أكثر ارتباكاً اليوم، مع فترات تعديل أطول كثيرا.

لقد تغيرت ديناميكيات أسواق الطاقة بشكل ملحوظ مع تشغيل إنتاج الصخر الزيتي على نطاق محرك للسوق في الفترة 2013-2014. ومع تلبية هذا المصدر الجديد للمزيد من الطلب العالمي على الطاقة، وخاصة في الولايات المتحدة، لم يعد مستخدمو الطاقة يعتمدون على منظمة الدول المصدرة للنفط (الأوبك) وغيرها من منتجي النفط. وفي هذه العملية، أصبحوا أيضاً أقل عُرضة للمخاوف السياسية.

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