The Debate

How low can it go? The collapse of crude oil prices

THE DEBATE
THE DEBATE © FRANCE 24

With the global economy grinding to a sudden halt because of the Covid-19 pandemic, oil prices are going through the floor with suppliers fast running out of room to store the stuff. That’s terrible news for oil producers the world over, particularly in countries who rely on hydrocarbon handouts to keep regimes afloat. But if you’re dreaming of free fill-ups, don’t hold your breath. It might not be such great news either for cash-strapped consumers: for one, much of the price at the pump is tax and it will only fall so much.

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Also, what if it shoots back up again just as suddenly? How much of a disruption will that be? If that happens, what of French President Emmanuel Macron’s prediction last week that after this crisis, people will no longer accept breathing smog-filled air? What will it take to turn this crisis into an opportunity to speed up a successful and orderly energy transition away from fossil fuels?

>> Oil prices remain volatile after record-breaking negative plunge

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