WASHINGTON, April 18. /Offset. TASS Andrey Shitov/. The international monetary Fund (IMF) expects continued oil prices on world markets in 2017-2018 near $55 per barrel. This is evidenced by a new forecast-analytical report of the Fund as of and immediate prospects of the world economy, circulated on Tuesday in Washington on the eve of the spring session of the governing bodies of the IMF and the world Bank.

According to the document, the price for a barrel of oil in 2016 averaged $42,84. It is expected that in 2017 it will reach $of 55.23 per barrel, and in 2018 – just reduced to $55,06 per barrel.

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Forecast oil prices, the IMF calculates, on the basis of the average value of British, Dubai and West Texas grades of this raw material.

A special section of the report about 10 pages devoted to “developments in commodity markets and projections for the future, with special emphasis on the role of technology and unconventional sources on the global oil market.”

Recognizing that “the development of unconventional sources is inherently uncertain”, i.e. unpredictable, the report’s authors, however, give some predictions. “Despite the uncertainty around technological improvements and the recent agreement of OPEC, the rebalancing of the oil supply in line with demand and prices are stable will depend on the perspectives (use) non-traditional sources,” they write.

In their view, “a contractual reduction of oil production to 1.8 million barrels per day for a period of 6 months, in principle, will help to rebalance the market by the end of 2017 and eliminate the excess supply, as measured slightly less than 1 million barrels a day.”

“Annual growth of demand for oil, generally estimated at 1.2 million barrels per day, will be in the next few years be met through unconventional sources – primarily through resources generated now (extract) deepwater and ultra-deepwater oil, oil Sands, heavy and extra-heavy crude oil,” the authors report.

“If it were not for shale, depletion and consequences of weak investment in a few years would strongly push prices up – they write. – Instead, when a new normal in the oil market moderate price growth will further stimulate the production of shale oil. As a result, the supply of shale oil will help to soften the spike, which otherwise would be sharp. In the medium term in conditions of further price growth will resume technical improvement (methods) unconventional production, which ultimately will give impetus to the next price cycle.”