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Energy Demand to Signal Economic Recovery: Total CEO

Increased demand for oil and gas will signal the first signs of economic recovery, said Christophe de Margerie, TotalCEO.

"Definitely this year seems a little too optimistic; next year would be great," de Margerie told CNBC's Melissa Francis. "We might have to live with two years of low prices and then hopefully see a rebound of the economy and oil."

(See the accompanying video for more.)

Even with the current slump, De Margerie says the energy industry needs to keep investing in new technology for fossil fuels as well as alternative energy sources.

(See the accompanying video for more.)

"When you stop and restart it will cost you much more and the effect will be far reduced," he said. "It's very important that we keep this strategy of investing in new energies, cleaner, but that we first continue to invest in our traditional core businesses in a cleaner way."

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