Bloomberg News

Oil Output Lags Capacity Investment, Weatherford Says

September 28, 2011

(Corrects production figure in third paragraph of story published Sept. 26.)

Sept. 26 (Bloomberg) -- Investment in worldwide production capacity for oil grew by an average rate of 11 percent a year from 2000 to 2010, while output increased by 1.8 percent over the decade, a Weatherford International Ltd. executive said.

“We have spent a lot of money but did not get a lot of spare capacity in return,” said Nicholas Gee, group vice president for completion and production at the Swiss-based oilfield services company.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries did not significantly boost its capacity during the 10-year period, Gee told an industry conference today in Manama, Bahrain. Oil producers will need to pump an additional 350 billion barrels by 2030, he said.

The cost of doing so will equate to $100 a barrel by 2030 as the industry moves toward developing more unconventional oil, Gee said. Saudi Arabia, holder of the world’s largest crude oil reserves, will see its cost of output rise to around $40 a barrel, he said. Gee didn’t give estimates for current Saudi or worldwide production costs.

--Editors: Bruce Stanley, Rob Verdonck

To contact the reporter on this story: Wael Mahdi in Khobar at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Voss at

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