Despite uncertainty over the course of the war in Iraq, we might actually see gas prices inching down. Midwestern ag economist Roy Frederick says a strike in Venezuela was one of the biggest reasons for our high gasoline prices this past fall and winter. He says the strike’s finally settled and Venezuela’s started “ramping up” production, to 2 and-a-half million barrels or so compared to the three million a day they produced before the strike. OPEC nations started increasing their production in January, and Frederick says we’re finally seeing that increased supply of crude oil affecting prices. The oil we count on from the Middle East, primarily Saudi Arabia, takes at least a month to ship across the Atlantic. And most of that oil arrives at Gulf ports, which meant more time to refine it and ship it to Iowa. Dr. Frederick, an economist at University of Nebraska, says we may never see one-dollar gas again but he’s optimistic about seeing prices go down ten or fifteen cents this spring.
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