Oil prices rose on Monday on a slow return of US crude output cut by frigid conditions and as an approaching meeting by top producers is expected to keep production largely reined in, pointing to tight global supply. Brent crude was up $1.72, or 2.7%, at $64.63 a barrel by 1515 GMT, after gaining nearly 1% last week. US oil rose $1.87, or 3%, to $61.11 a barrel, having fallen 0.4% last week. Abnormally cold weather in Texas and the Plains states forced the shutdown of up to four million barrels per day (bpd) of crude production along with 21 billion cubic feet of natural gas output, analysts estimated. Shale oil producers in the region could take at least two weeks to restart the more than two million bpd of crude output affected, sources said, as frozen pipes and power supply interruptions slow their recovery.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 23rd, 2021.

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