A fresh picture of crude oil's future

France's International Energy Agency has painted a fresh picture of the international crude oil industry which foresees major changes to regional focus and distribution.

The Globe and Mail reports that the Paris-based adviser to developed economies on energy markets sees profound transformation in crude oil, with almost all demand growth concentrated in Asia and North America emerging as the fastest growing supplier outside of OPEC.

The distribution of the best refineries is also changing, with fixed capital in developed economies becoming obsolete and inefficient, unable to compete with the new mega-refineries constructed in Asia, India and the Middle East.

According to IEA executive director Maria van der Hoeven this all means that the "global oil market is entering a period of major transformation on many levels, from early stages of upstream through the downstream."

The most significant change is the oil boom in North America, with the US lifting production from 3.3 million barrels per day to 11.4 million barrels over the next five years, surpassing the output of Saudi Arabia.

Canada is also set to raise oil output significantly, with a forecast growth increase from the IEA of 1.1 million barrels per day on extraction from oil sands.