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13

Not All Oil Exporters Benefit From High Prices: WTO

Some but not all developing countries have benefited from higher oil prices in the last two years

Some but not all developing countries have benefited from higher oil prices in the last two years, the World Trade Organization (WTO) said in a report released Thursday, Xinhua agency reported.

Since developing countries as a group are large net exporters of fuels while developed countries are net importers, as a result of higher oil prices, developing countries taken together have enjoyed higher export earnings, improved external balances and terms of trade gains, says the World Trade Report 2005.

However, higher oil prices also mean production cost increases in many industries, such as petrochemicals, plastics, aluminium and transport services, according to the report.

Increasingly, the destination of developing country fuel exports is other developing countries, says the report. In 2002-2003, 40 percent of developing country oil exports went to other developing countries, up from less than 30 percent in the 1990s.

Higher energy prices affect individual developing countries andregions in quite different ways. Among the four developing countryregions identified in the report, only the Middle East and Africa are large net exporters of fuel, but developing Asia, in particular, has become a large net-fuel importer.