Dubai oil prices to average 105 USD per barrel in 2011: researcher

15:16, April 13, 2011      

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Dubai oil prices are expected to average 105 U.S. dollars per barrel this year, a South Korean research institute said Wednesday.

"Average prices of Dubai oil, South Korea's benchmark, will reach 105 dollars per barrel in 2011 due to continuous unrest in the Middle East," Kwak Soo-jong, a senior researcher at Samsung Economic Research Institute (SERI), said in a report.

The Mideast unrest is projected to peak in the second quarter of this year, but the geopolitical risk will continue into the second half of the year, which will keep Dubai oil prices at a higher level, Kwak said.

The spot price of Dubai crude, which represents about 80 percent of South Korea's oil imports, currently stays above 116 dollars a barrel, according to the report.

South Korea's consumer prices this year are projected to surpass the upper ceiling of the Bank of Korea (BOK)'s 2-4 percent inflation target band, Kwak said.

Kwak expected the BOK to raise its key interest rate to 3.75 percent or 4 percent by year-end from the current 3 percent. The central bank decided on Tuesday to keep the benchmark rate unchanged at 3 percent.

Source: Xinhua
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