By Reuters

The United States will overtake Saudi Arabia as the world's top oil producer by 2017, the West's energy agency said on Monday as a steep rise in shale oil and gas production pushes the country toward self-sufficiency in energy.

The International Energy Agency (IEA), which advises major industrialized nations on energy policies, gave the estimates in an annual long-term report. Its conclusions were in sharp contrast with its 2011 report, which saw Saudi Arabia remaining the top producer throughout 2035.

"Energy developments in the ...

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