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Analysis of the world oil market demonstrates that one can expect high levels of world oil prices to continue in the near future. According to basic variant of the latest (June 2004) U.S. Department of Energy forecast world oil price, determined as an average price of oil imported in the United States will remain at a rather high level and will constitute on average for 2004 a sum of $US32.3 per barrel.

In addition, maximum price level ($US34.6 per barrel) will remain in the second quarter of 2004 and in starting with the second half of 2004 a gradual decrease of world oil prices will be recorded. According to the U.S. Department of Energy forest average oil price in the year 2005 will come to $US29.8 per barrel (Table 4).

Table World oil price forecast for 2004-2005 dollars/barrel 2000 . 2001 . 2002 . 2003 . 2004 . 2005 .

(forecast) (forecast) Average price of oil, im- ported to US* 27,72 22,01 23,69 27,74 32,30 29,*Price of oil purchased by oil refineries.

Source: U.S. Department of Energy/Energy Information Administration.

At the same time, in the future dynamics of the world oil prices there is a considerable uncertainty linked with a possible presence of a number of hardly forecasted factors. For example, considerable increase in the world oil production due to an increase in OPEC production quotas (or considerable surplus in fixed quotas) as well as a considerable increase in oil exports by Russia, Iraq and other producers (high oil prices stimulate oil extraction in high production cost regions, i.e. beyond OPEC borders) will lead to a price reduction. Weakening of world demand on oil due to a reduction of economic growth rates in major oil importing countries or, for instance, exceptionally warm winter in Northern hemisphere can result in oil price cut.

Forecasts of world oil prices for long term developed by a number of leading international organization in 2003-2004 are given in Table 5. As can be seen from the given data all forecasts differ considerably depending on basic assumptions adopted by the developer in assessing a long-term dynamics of world prices. At the same time, practically all forecasts except high price scenario forecast developed by the U.S. Department of Energy envisage in the future a considerably lower world oil price level in comparison with the current level. For example, forecasts for the year 2010 including basic scenario of the U.S. Department of Energy forecast and International Energy Agency forecast prices do not surpass $US25 per barrel (in 2002 prices) and according to some forecasts world oil price in the longterm on average will be below $US20 per barrel.

Table Forecasts of long-term world oil prices dollars/barrel (in 2002 prices) Organization 2010 2015 U.S. Department of Energy/ Energy Information Agency (EIA) Basic scenario 24,17 25,07 26,High price scenario 33,27 34,23 34,Low price scenario 16,98 16,98 16,International Energy Agency (IEA) 21,75 23,82 25,Global Insight, Inc. (GII) 22,26 22,93 23,Petroleum Economics, Ltd. (PEL) 21,27 18,41 15,PIRA Energy Group (PIRA) 23,90 26,70 - Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) 22,57 22,57 22,Deutsche Banc AG (DB) 18,43 18,41 18,Energy and Environmental Analysis, Inc. (EEA) 20,33 19,84 19,National Petroleum Council (NPC) 18,00 18,00 18,Strategic Energy & Economic Research, Inc. (SEER) 19,86 20,88 22,Centre for Global Energy Studies (CGES) 21,27 18,41 15,Note. Forecasts EIA for average oil price, imported to US ; PIRA, NRCan, SEER NPC for the price on westTexas oil; GII, DB EEA for average price purchased by oil refineries; IEA for average price of imported oil basket IEA;

PEL for price on Brent oil.

Thereby, in the new future one can expect high level of world oil prices and favorable external conditions for the development of the oil-and-gas sector. In future, however, a considerable reduction in oil prices is possible. According to forecasts developed by leading foreign organizations actual world oil prices will tend to the mark of 22-25 dollars per barrel. In this connection one should not exclude a possibility of rather sharp changes in oil prices, which dynamics, as retrospective analysis demonstrates, is subject to considerable fluctuations.

80 Oil 40 Gas (right scale) 0 Source: calculated on Goskomstat of Russia data.

Graph.1. Average prices of oil and gas in dollar terms in 1992-2004 ., dollars/ton, dollars/thousand cubic meter Yu. N. Bobylev IET Business Survey: Industry in June of Positive trends observed in the dynamics of the Russian industry continue to consolidate. The rates of growth in sales have stabilized at a very high level. An insignificant downfall in the intensity of increase in output resulted in its higher quality: enterprises have achieved a closer correlation between the dynamics of demand and production. An unprecedented share of products is being sold for money.

According to the data presented by the State Statistical Service (Gosstatsluzhba), in May the growth in industrial output continued. The average daily output increased by 0.4 per cent. The estimates made by the Center for Macroeconomic Analysis and Short Term Prognostication (CMASTP) demonstrated that the average monthly rate of increase in the volumes of production made 0.6 per cent over two months of the 2nd quarter.

The results of the June survey of enterprises demonstrated that the positive trends registered in the preceding months persisted. As before, in industry there are observed high rates of growth in sales of products for money. The data not adjusted for the seasonality factors demonstrated a growth in this indicator by 4 points in comparison with the figures registered in the preceding month, when there were registered the highest May results ever. After the adjustment of the data for the seasonal and calendar component, it became obvious that sales have stabilized at the level not seen in the Russian industry since year 2000. Especially high rates of sales were observed in the industry of construction materials, mechanical engineering, fuel, and food industries. In light industry, a decrease in demand (negative balance values) persisted.

Evaluations of effective demand has again exceeded the 50 per cent level: more than a half of enterprises in the Russian industry are on the whole satisfied with the amounts of sales of their products for money. However, among other enterprises there prevail appraisals below norm and as a result, the balance remains negative. The lowest level of satisfaction has been traditionally registered in light industry. In the last months, the share of normal evaluations made about 30 per cent in this industry.

In spite of a rather high growth in effective demand, the generalized data of surveys demonstrate a decline in the intensity of increase in the volumes of output. On the whole, in industry the balance of actual changes in production has further decreased (after the adjustment for seasonal factors) by additional 3 p. p. in June. This, however, did not result in a growth in the share of enterprises, where sales increased at rates outpacing the rates of growth in output. The microlevel calculations demonstrated that in June there occurred a decline in this indicator to 13 per cent as compared with 22 per cent registered in May, while the share of reports about equal changes in output and demand increased up to per cent (as compared in 58 per cent registered a month before). Therefore, enterprises bring into line the dynamics of output and dynamics of sales.

At present, enterprises sell about 87 per cent of their output for money. This is the best value registered over the whole period of monitoring. Only 4 per cent of products are bartered. As concerns electrical power engineering and fuel industry, there was registered no barter transactions. However, in construction industry and glass production the share of barter makes 11 per cent and 13 per cent respectively. A year ago the shares of barter in these industries were at 12 per cent and 10 per cent. In the 2nd quarter of 2004, the share of promissory notes and offsets sales in the overall production made 8 per cent, the maximum of such transactions were registered in chemistry, petrochemistry, and mechanical engineering (10 per cent in each industry).

Good rates of growth and a high share of cash payments permit enterprises to improve the dynamics of profits. Although the values of the balance of changes in profits remain negative, i.e. in the industry there prevail enterprises, which consider that their real profits decrease, the results of the last months demonstrate decelerating rates of decline in profits. In June, the absolute decrease in profits was registered only in electrical power engineering, nonferrous metallurgy, and light industry. Across other industries there were registered positive balances of changes in profits..

Among the reports about actual changes in prices there begin to grow the share of answers no changes. In June, this indicator made 75 per cent increasing by 13 points over two months as the traditional wave of New Year growth in prices starts to ebb. In 2003, the share of reports about stabilization of producers prices have not been below 70 per cent since May. By the end of the preceding year, this indicator made 80 per cent. At present, the largest number of answers indicating stabilization of prices are being received from chemistry and petrochemistry (94 per cent), forestry and paper (85 per cent), and light (77 per cent) industries.

Over the last three years, the situation concerning the availability of credits for industrial enterprises has changed dramatically. The share of answers characterizing this availability as normal has increased from 45 per cent in 2001 to 62 per cent. In 2004, the highest level of availability of borrowed funds was registered in chemistry and petrochemistry (80 per cent), electrical power engineering, forestry, and paper industry (75 per cent), fuel industry (73 per cent). In the 2nd quarter of 2004, the most intensive growth in the use of credits was registered in electrical power engineering (the balance is + 26 per cent), ferrous metallurgy (+ 20 per cent), and light industry (+ 16 per cent).

The forecasts of changes in demand continue to become more optimistic. In May, the balance (as adjusted for seasonal factors) further increased by 3 p. p. an increase in the rates of sales is expected across all industries.

In June, the plans for changes in output across the Russian industry practically did not change.

Since it is expected that the rates of sales would increase, this situation permitted to achieve a closer correlation between the dynamics of demand and production. Similar changes in demand and output are expected by 75 per cent of enterprises, what is the absolute maximum.

S. V. Tsukhlo Foreign trade Russian foreign trade main indicators demonstrate constant high rate of growth. Favorable situation in the world market as well as high dynamics of the customer demand contribute to a considerable increase in both export and import supplies.

In June 2004 Federal laws were enacted that play an important role in regulation of foreign economic activity: On Foundations of State Regulation of Foreign Economic Activity and On Currency Regulation and Currency Control. In April 2004 Russias foreign economic turnover calculated, using balance of payments methodology, amounted to 22 billion dollars, which surpasses the same index of the last year by 35 percent. In addition, Russian export reached a record level for the last fifteen years, which amounted to 14.2 billion dollars, which is by 4.7 percent more than in March of current year and by 39.5 percent more than in April of the last year. Export volume to the countries of the far abroad amounted to 11.9 billion dollars (by 41.9 percent more than a year before.) The volume of import to the Russian Federation in April 2004 amounted to 7.8 billion dollars, which is 2.6 percent more than in the previous month and by 26.1 percent more than in April 2003.

Import from the countries of the far abroad constituted the sum of 6.1 billion dollars (by 21.5 percent more than in April 2003.) The fact that export was increasing by higher rates resulted in the fact that considerably increased the debit balance of foreign trade, which in April 2004 constituted 6.4 billion dollars, which is by 7.percent more than in March 2004 and by 60.2 percent more than in April 2003.

B -1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 Balance Export Import Source: Goskomstat of RF, CB of RF Graph 1. Main indicators of Russian foreign trade (billion of dollars) Extremely favorable state of the world market for Russian exporters remains the main reason for a sharp growth of export supplies.

Despite an insignificant reduction in oil prices recorded in April 2004 in comparison with previous month, oil prices continued remaining at the high level. For example, average oil price of Urals amounted to $US30.1 per barrel (reduction in comparison with March 2004 by 2.6 percent) and of Brent - $US33.5 per barrel (reduction by 0.3 percent.) OPEC decision to cut down oil production by 1 million barrels per day from 1April 2004, as well as continued growth of oil demand by oil importing countries and unstable political situation in the Middle East represented main factors that were behind the high oil prices.

Contractual prices of the Russian natural gas in April of current year in comparison with March have not practically changed and in comparison with April 2003 increased by 7.3 percent.

Moreover, in April 2004 London Metal Exchange recorded price fall on base metals (except aluminum). If at the beginning of 2004 world prices on non-ferrous metals constantly went up then in the second quarter quotations of non-ferrous metals started falling and by the end of April price of nickel reached its minimum level starting with the beginning of 2004. Price fall of nickel and copper was stipulated by a weakened demand on these metals on part of China.

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