The liquid that keeps the human civilization working everyday at its very best, that which has seen many a men give up life for its search, which is popularly referred to as the ‘Black Gold’ – Oil, the liquid that has changed the fortunes of countries who possess it. Science defines oil as a fossil fuel that is formed as result of a natural phenomenon wherein large quantities of dead animal carcasses are buried under sedimentary rocks and after withstanding intense heat and pressure give us the crude form of liquid which is yellow to black in color.
The modern phenomenon of oil is associated with the invention of the internal combustion engine in the 19th century and since then the use of this resource has risen to monumental importance and quantities. There is no doubt that oil is perhaps one of the most important resources on our planet, the functioning of our economies, our civilizations depends on this very natural resource. Since oil is practically the lifeline of our daily life lets enumerate the top ten producers, suppliers or feeders whatever one wishes to call them in the world, these countries are the hearts that keep the economic side of things working healthily.
10. Kuwait – 3.1 per cent of world’s production
The smallest of all the countries on our list, Kuwait is the tenth largest producer of oil in the world’s whose petroleum industry gobbles out 2.75 million barrels of crude oil every day. The country which currently has proven reserves (those which have 90% certainty of extraction) to the tune of 104 billion barrels, which is 10 per cent of the total reserves of oil in the planet, is member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries. The oil industry, which is the largest industry of the country, is owned by the government of Kuwait. Oil was first discovered in the country in 1938 and since then it has been a major feeder of petrol pump across the globe.
9. Brazil – 3.15 per cent of world’s production
The country of ‘Samba’ and Christ – The Redeemer is also home to one of the largest oil production industries in the world. This South American giant produces oil at the rate of 2.8 million barrels per day which makes it stand ninth on our list. The country is a relatively new entrant in the business of oil production and produces such numbers of oil thanks mainly to its Lula Oil Fields which are located some 200 odd kilometers off the coast of Rio De Jeneiro. This country currently posses proven reserves of around 12.85 billion barrels, the Lula fields themselves have around 8 billion barrels of extractable oil. The oil production scene in the country is only going to get bigger thanks to the discovery of the Jupiter fields which is 37 kilometers to the east of Lula which is expected to yield same output as Lula oil fields.
8. Mexico – 3.3 per cent of world’s production
The country ruled by the Aztecs for most part of its history and conquered by the great Spanish commander Hernan Cortes, is the second largest producer of oil in the Western Hemisphere. The country currently produces 2.95 million barrels per day and has proven reserves to the tune of 10.42 billion barrels. The country though having a decent amount of oil reserves is seeing its oil production industry go into a kind of gradual decline with the shutting of its old oil fields and the current one’s not able to keep up with the rate. There have been new discoveries of oil fields in the country but they are also seeing as largely incapable of maintaining the current rate of production.
7. United Arab Emirates – 3.6 per cent of world’s production
The illustrious Middle East Asian country is the seventh largest producers of oil in the world currently. Its daily production is at 3.23 million barrels per day and with reserves of around 98 billion barrels its reserves are estimated to last for 93 more years. The three Emirates of Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah jointly hold these reserves with Abu Dhabi having the largest share at around 92 billion barrels, Dubai with 4 billion barrels and Sharjah around 1.5 billion barrels. The country has optimistically promised to rev up production to 5 million barrels per day. The country has benefited greatly from their oil reserve which has helped it establish itself as a great tourism destination.
6. Canada – 4.4 per cent of world’s production
The third largest oil producer in the Western Hemisphere and the single largest oil exporter to the United States of America the country produces at 3.92 million barrels per day making it the sixth largest producers of oil. The country struck oil almost at the same time when the first oil wells were found in America with the first well being dug by hand instead of a drill. The country is currently exploring the unconventional means of producing oil such as from sand but doesn’t have the technology required to process that oil for use. Once it is done the reserves of Canada will rise to 179 billion barrels which will make it the third largest reserve holder behind Saudi Arabia and Venezuela.
5. Iran – 4.6 per cent of world’s production
Probably the most controversial of all the countries in this list, Iran is the second largest producer among the OPEC countries with oil production of 4.13 million barrels per day. The country has around 10 per cent of the conventional oil reserves of the world which stand at 137 billion barrels. The oil and gas industry is a driver of industrialization and growth in the country. Oil was discovered in Iran by a foreigner named William Darcy who was sponsored by the government of Iran to explore for oil, breakthrough struck in 1908. Iran is an energy superpower today and can produce oil for 90 more years.
4. China – 4.7 per cent of world’s production
China’s position on this list is largely due to the discovery of great oil reserves in the north-eastern part of its geography in the late 1950s which helped it lower its import bill greatly. It is the second largest consumer of oil after USA and produces around 4.19 million barrels per day with proven reserves to the tune of 20.35 billion barrels.
3. Russia – 11.64 per cent of world’s production
One of the biggest oil producers in the world Russia has yet to fully realize its oil production potential. The country produces oil at the rate of 10.3 million barrels per day and has proven reserves of 60 billion barrels. The country is yet to explore oil in the eastern Siberian region which can add upto 4.3 billion barrels to its reserves. Russia has the largest stake in the Arctic Circle which is expected to produce some 100 billion barrels of oil. It is pegged to become the largest oil producer by 2015.
2. United States of America – 11.94 per cent of world’s production
The largest consumer of oil in the world and its second largest producer, United Sates has been the model of emulation as far as using conventional energy sources such as oil for industrial and economic prosperity is concerned for most of the world. The country currently produces 10.59 million barrels per day but is still a net importer of the product. It is investing heavily in non-conventional sources of oil such as tar and shale sands which will make its technically recoverable reserves stand at 219 billion barrels as against its conventional reserves of 21 billion barrels.
1. Saudi Arabia – 13.24 per cent of world’s production
After a journey through half of the world we finally arrive at our number one producer of oil, Saudi Arabia, the great kingdom nation of the Middle East is home to the second largest reserves in the world and produces oil at 11.75 million barrels per day. Its reserves are the single most sources of its wealth, prosperity and power. Its proven reserves stand at 263 billion barrels behind Venezuela’s 297 billion barrels.