Oil veterans caution against placing too much faith in the numbers associated with the oil export ban battle, given the unpredictability of the global oil market. They point out that Middle East oil suppliers could lower their prices to compete with a new supply from Alaska, making it risky to predict potential export markets or revenues.
"These numbers being used are numbers that must face the test of the marketplace," said Al Greenstein, an Arco spokesman. "This may not be as beneficial as some hope or as damaging as others predict."
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Selling Alaskan Oil
Japan is expected to become a likely consumer of Alaskan oil if the U.S. government lifts its export ban. While oil production in Alaska has been decreasing, production is expected to go up once the ban is lifted.
JAPANESE OIL IMPORTS
In billions of barrels:
ALASKAN OIL PRODUCTION
In millions of barrels*:
* Based on average daily production.
Sources: Nippon Business Facts & Figures, State of Alaska