Oil & the Middle East Programme

The Oil and the Middle East Programme of the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies was established in 2009. It is dedicated to the advanced study of modern-day oil markets and of the economics of natural resource wealth. With historical focus on the resource-rich economies of the Middle East, the Programme also focuses on major non-OPEC producing regions such as Russia, and emerging energy markets such as China and India.

The programme’s research activities centre around its three main thematic branches:

  • Oil markets and their financialisation

The key area of the programme’s research concentrates on global oil market dynamics, such as oil price behaviour, benchmark developments, fundamentals research, the impact of unconventional energy sources and of biofuels on oil market dynamics, producer-consumer relations, and oil market financialisation hypotheses.

  • The economics of resource-rich economies and the Middle East

The programme’s second key area of research concentrates on the management of natural resource wealth within resource-rich economies, including resource-based development strategies and economic growth, ways of distributing natural resource rents, and domestic demand growth challenges.

  • Development of emerging energy markets

In response to the rapid rise in energy consumption outside traditional OECD energy consumers, the Oil and the Middle East Programme analyses demand and supply patterns in emerging energy markets, including Russia, India, China, Latin America and Africa.

Research is disseminated via a dedicated research paper series, short energy comments and contributions to academic journals and specialised publications, in addition to a book series published by Oxford University Press. Members of programme staff have also been involved in  a range of international publications, including the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the International Energy Agency (IEA) and the International Energy Forum (IEF). The Programme’s research group is composed of core staff, and draws on a network of external contributors from a wide range of disciplinary and industrial backgrounds.


Latest from the Oil & Middle East Programme

Global Oil Markets – Current Developments and Future Prospects

Published: 17th July 2015 | By:

In this presentation, given at the Bank of England, Bassam Fattouh looks at current developments in the oil market and explores some short and medium term prospects and concludes with the following observations: • It is important to be clear about causality; it is supply and demand imbalances that cause stocks to rise and for […]

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Eastward Shifting Oil Markets and the Future of Middle Eastern Benchmarks

Published: 13th July 2015 | By:

The recent increased Chinese activity in the Platts Dubai window is yet another manifestation of the eastward shift of international oil markets. In light of these changing dynamics, the necessity for a new marker for East of Suez crude oil pricing is commonly taken for granted. But must the benchmark for East of Suez necessarily […]

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Saudi Arabia Oil Policy – More than Meets the Eye?

Published: 19th June 2015 | By: , Anupama Sen

The sharp drop in the oil price between June 2014 and January 2015 turned the world’s attention to Saudi Arabia’s role in the oil market and the determinants of its oil output policy. Initial hopes that Saudi Arabia would come to ‘rescue’ and ‘balance’ the market and put a floor under the oil price were […]

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