By John Lee.
Intensive competition to supply China's oil demand has combined with slowing demand for oil globally, and this is putting downward pressure on oil prices in 2014, Reuters reports.
Iraq and Russia have positioned themselves to be long term suppliers of the Asian giant, squeezing out African and Latin American producers trying to improve their terms for the Asian market. This intensive competition means that oil on the market is surpassing demand.
In the case of Iraq, the strategy to increase exports to Asia will see exports rise to 882,000 bpd, an increase of 62%, according to Reuters data. China's slowing demand will still see a 7% rise in oil imports, but Iraqi and Russian exports will more than match this increase.
Iraq's rise to become one of China's main suppliers has been somewhat rapid, seeing the country become the 5th biggest supplier last year, overtaking Iran after cutting the price of its main crude, Basra Light.
(Tanker image via Shutterstock)