oil AFP/Getty Images

Il lato positivo del petrolio a buon mercato

BEIRUT – Nel giugno del 2014, un barile di greggio Brent – il principale riferimento per il mercato internazionale del petrolio – veniva venduto a 115 dollari. Oggi, meno di due anni dopo, il suo prezzo si aggira sui 45 dollari, o anche meno. Com’era prevedibile, un simile crollo è stato un forte shock per l'Arabia Saudita e gli sceiccati del Golfo, che basano sul petrolio circa l’85% delle loro entrate. Questi paesi, però, devono rendersi conto che, diversamente da quanto accaduto in passato, l’attuale crollo dei prezzi non sarà transitorio.

Questa "nuova normalità" sul fronte del petrolio riflette nuove realtà: la crescita economica della Cina, e quindi la sua domanda di petrolio, è destinata a diminuire; al contrario, l’efficienza energetica a livello mondiale aumenterà, anche per via degli impegni assunti a dicembre nell’ambito della conferenza di Parigi sul cambiamento climatico; infine, un’innovazione dirompente sta rendendo il petrolio e il gas di scisto, unitamente alle fonti di energia rinnovabile, molto più competitivi. Con il ritorno dell’Iran, della Libia e dell’Iraq come principali esportatori di petrolio, l’abbassamento dei prezzi dell’oro nero non potrà che essere inevitabile e duraturo.

L’Arabia Saudita e gli altri stati del Golfo non dovrebbero permettere che questa crisi vada sprecata, soprattutto perché essa rappresenta l’occasione perfetta per avviare una serie di riforme economiche su vari fronti.

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