Feature Reports

Oil Producers and Consumers

fr - qpqc pétrole
© DUFOUR MARCO / TOTAL

Oil is the most widely used energy source worldwide. Oil consumption is led by demand from emerging economies, particularly in the transportation and petrochemical sectors. Oil reserves are mainly concentrated in OPEC member countries, which are the main producers worldwide. 

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Global Oil Consumption

Global oil consumption rose by 1.5% between 2017 and 2018, maintaining the steady upward trend of the last ten years (average growth: 1.2%). At this rate, consumption is set to exceed the symbolic threshold of 100 million barrels a day in 2019. The United States, China and India were the main engines behind the expansion. In the United States, demand was underpinned by continued strength in the economy. Germany, and to a lesser extent France, experienced declines, after posting growth a year earlier.

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Global Oil Production

The year 2018 was marked by a significant surge in U.S. shale oilRefers to liquid hydrocarbons extracted from oil shale (see definition) by heating, pyrolysis or hydrogenation. production, which witnessed record growth of nearly 17% from the year before. The United States thus confirmed its position as the world’s foremost oil producer, in front of Saudi Arabia and Russia. BrentBrent is the name given to a relatively light crude oil made from a blend of crudes from 19 oil fields in the North Sea... crude traded at $70 per barrelUnit of volume measurement for crude oil that is equivalent to approximately 159 liters (0.159 cubic meters)... on average in 2018 (versus $55 in 2017), but prices dropped precipitously in the last two months of the year.

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Global Oil Reserves

Oil reserves are an estimate of crude oilOil that has not been refined. that can be recovered at an economically feasible cost at a given time. Estimated oil reserves were relatively stable from 2017 to 2018 and the ranking of the countries with the largest reserves was virtually unchanged. The “top 5” countries are still Venezuela (which is currently experiencing serious production problems), Saudi Arabia, Canada, Iran and Iraq.

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