When the oil price crashed five years ago it was supply side dynamics at play. Booming unconventional production, particularly in North America, brought downward pressure on the market. Crude prices have somewhat recovered and stabilised in recent times, but the oil and gas sector has not returned to its previous trajectory. Compared to earlier cycles, it’s now the outlook for demand, rather than supply, that is having the greatest impact in shaping the strategic thinking of the oil and gas sector.

There is much talk about the “energy transition”, where the world moves to lower carbon sources of energy, and a broad range of outlooks as to what our future energy landscape could be. In some scenarios this is expected to result in a gradual evolution over many decades; in others the switch to renewables is predicted to move at a far greater pace, aligned to achieving important climate change objectives. Nonetheless, under all practicable scenarios oil and gas will play a signific...

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