How will the effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine drive up fuel prices at the pump? You are not seeing the link between those two ? And yet it exists/ And the figures are there to prove it: for a few months now, and following the various announcements of the laboratories on the effectiveness of their serums, the average price of a barrel of oil has sky-rocketed, reaching 66 dollars in March 2021 against 38 dollars last November, or $55 just over a year ago, in February 2020, before the virus crippled Europe.
The vaccine reassures financial markets
So what is the link between these two factors? The financial markets, now reassured by the future prospects offered by the various vaccines, as Olivier Gantois, president of the French Union of Petroleum Industries (Ufip), explained to Europe 1.
Each time we confirm that vaccinations have their effectiveness and that we will gradually come to vaccinate more and more people, this supports the stock-exchange. To be more precise, it removes the spectre of a collapse in demand and prices. As a result, since November, crude oil prices have gradually increased, until today, to around $65 per barrel.
Geopolitical tensions are also involved
As a result, consumers are faced with prices per litre which have gained between 10 and 20 cents between the end of 2020 and now. But a return to regular activity is not the only determining factor to justify this increase.
'There are also geopolitical tensions in the Middle East, the region which alone represents almost 50% of proven oil reserves in the world,' explains to Europe 1 Francis Perrin, specialist in energy issues and research director at the Institute of International and Strategic Relations (IRIS).
Last factor, demand, which has picked up again on high bases since the start of 2021, in particular thanks to China resuming its industrial activity.