This year’s dip will come on top of a 25 percent drop in spending in the sector recorded in 2015 with its total of $583 billion, the IEA said in a report.
“The total fall exceeds $300 billion over the two years – an unprecedented occurrence,” the report said, adding two consecutive years of reduced upstream oil and gas investment had not been seen for 40 years.
“Furthermore, there are no signs that companies plan to increase their upstream capital spending in 2017,” it said.
A total of $900 billion was invested in oil, gas and coal in 2015, down 18 percent on 2014.
Total global investment in all forms of energy fell 8 percent to $1.8 trillion last year, the report said.
The largest drop in investment came in the North American upstream oil and gas sector, which also helped China to take top spot for total energy investment after three previous years of dominance by the United States.