The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) on Tuesday formally raised its expectations for global oil demand in 2021, citing expectations for a recovery from the pandemic and stronger economic growth.

Crude Oil Prices

In its Monthly Oil Market Report (MOMR), the cartel projected demand would rise by 5.95 million b/d this year, a nearly 7% increase from 2020. The estimate is up 70,000 b/d from the group’s earlier outlook in March.

“Gasoline is projected to be the key driver for oil demand recovery beginning with the onset of the summer driving season,” OPEC said in the MOMR.

“As the spread and intensity of the Covid-19 pandemic are expected to subside with the ongoing rollout of vaccination programs, social distancing requirements and travel limitations are likely to...