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US Crude Oil Production Reaches Highest Level in 20 Years: IEA

Total output increased by nearly 1 million barrels in 2012.

Crude oil production in the U.S. averaged more than 7 million barrels per day in January, the highest level since November 1992, the International Energy Agency said in its monthly report Wednesday.

According to preliminary estimates, production was up by 910,000 barrels per day compared with January 2012, thanks to the development of non-conventional hydrocarbon sources including shale and tight oil reservoirs.

Total U.S. oil output increased by almost 1 million barrels a day in 2012, to 9.1 million barrels, according to the report.

Still, the report said lower drilling levels for natural gas will result in decreased volumes of natural gas liquid (NGL).

"Though NGL production growth is expected to be muted in 2013, crude production is expected to grow by" 610,000 barrels per day, the report said, bringing total oil output to 9.8 million barrels per day this year.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2013

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