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Europe drives away from oil as vehicle sales slump

Tight mileage standards, a saturated car market and good public transportation mean the continent's fuel needs will grow slowly, if at all

Those looking for a stimulus to sales of crude-based transport fuels won't find much succour in Europe. Even allowing for the continent's economic recovery, this is a region with few growth prospects for oil and its products, given a near-saturated vehicle market and a push towards greater efficiency and lower carbon emissions. The tone is set by the latest slump in vehicle sales. Demand for new passenger cars in the European Union fell to around 12 million in 2012, down 8.2% from the previous year and the lowest level for 17 years, according to the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (ACEA). Only the UK bucked the downward trend, recording a modest 3.7% rise in sales. The slide h

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