In its December Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO), the agency expected the growth in 2020 in the country is slower than 2018 growth of 1.6 million barrels per day and 2019 growth of 1.3 million barrels per day.
According to EIA, the slowing crude oil production growth results from a decline in drilling rigs over the past year that EIA expected to continue into 2020.
Despite the decline in rigs, EIA forecast production will continue to grow as rig efficiency and well-level productivity rises, offsetting the decline in the number of rigs.
In the meantime, EIA data also showed that the United States exported 90,000 barrels per day more total crude oil and petroleum products in September than it imported. This is the first month recorded in U.S. data that the United States exported more crude oil and petroleum products than it imported.
U.S. imports and exports records of crude oil and petroleum products started on an annual basis in 1949 and on a monthly basis in 1973. EIA expected total crude oil and petroleum net exports to average 570,000 barrels per day in 2020 compared with average net imports of 490,000 barrels per day in 2019.