Les années 1960/1980
Au-delà des deux dates charnières de 1973 et 1979, il importe de considérer les évolutions qui ont touché l’Europe de l’ouest comme des mutations nécessaires dans un monde de moins en moins bipolaire. À travers ses épreuves et ses hésitations, la Communauté européenne construit malgré tout un parcours original dans le domaine énergétique. Consciente de ses faiblesses, elle n’a pas toutes les armes pour dépasser ses contradictions. Mais la période 1960/1980 lui permet au moins de poser les bases de solutions adaptées aux réalités du Vieux Continent.
The 1973 Oil Shock and the Institutional and Fiscal Framework for Petroleum Exploration and Production Activities in the UK North Sea
Juan Carlos BOUE
Oxford Institute of Energy Studies
The UK North Sea occupies a special place in the annals of the evolution of both the international oil industry and the world petroleum market after 1973. This prominence is a reflection of the immense influence that North Sea exploration and production activities have had, on multiple dimensions. For example, on the technological front, the UK North Sea was the place where the offshore petroleum industry not only first ventured into water depths significantly greater than those encountered in its birthplace (the US sector of the Gulf of Mexico) but also had to develop new ways of coping with an unprecedentedly harsh marine operating environment.1 On an industrial economics front, the genesis and expansion of forward and futures markets for Brent crude oil were at the forefront of marketization and financialization processes whereby the international oil trade assumed an inverted pyramidal structure, with the bulk of the volume of oil traded being priced on the basis of signals emitted from a small set of paper and cash markets with a narrow output base, but whose joint trading volume is a large multiple of daily global crude oil production.2 On the global macroeconomics front, the significant incremental flows from the North Sea at a time of rapidly contracting demand made a key contribution to the demise of the administered price structure that the Organization of the petroleum exporting countries (OPEC) had sought to erect after its most...
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