n AfricaGrowth Agenda - A surge in international crude oil prices : implications for small southern African oil-importing countries

Volume 2011, Issue 7
  • ISSN : 1811-5187


From the beginning of this year, international oil prices have been on the increase as depicted by Figure 1. In April 2011, the nominal price of crude oil reached a maximum of US$120.90 per barrel. Oil is one of the most important commodities in the world due to the role it plays in many economies. Apart from being used as liquid fuel for transportation, in small developing countries such as Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland (LNS), it is used mainly for heating and cooking. Furthermore, oil is also used in the production processes by many firms and also in electric power generation. This article looks at the determinants of high oil prices in recent months and the implications of these high oil prices on small oil-importing countries in the Southern African region, in particular, LNS countries.

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