Russia's recent oil production defies forecasts

Expectations about oil supply from Russia may need to be adjusted. Downward.The country’s production, surging since 1998, has sputtered in recent months. In a world with rising demand and a shrinking number of places able to increase production, that’s something to worry about.The International Energy Agency sketches the picture in its February Monthly Oil Market Report. Year-on-year monthly production growth, it says, peaked in the summer of 2003 at 12%, nearly 1 million b/d.Through early 2004 growth remained at 10% but fell to 6% by the end of the year.Extrapolation of the slowdown indicates the production increase for all of 2005 will be less than 350,000 b/d.In January, IE...

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