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Fact of the Week

Fact #125: April 24, 2000

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Reserve to Production Ratios for Top Ten Oil Producing Nations
The ratio of reserves to production gives a relative measure of the resources available in different oil producing countries. At current production rates, known reserves of crude oil in OPEC countries would last 29 to 142 years, with Iraq having the largest ratio. The three nations which joined OPEC's production cuts in 1999 also have substantial reserves, with Mexico at 37 years. The R/P ratio for the United States is only 7 years. However, these calculations do not include estimates of undiscovered oil, which are uncertain but would substantially increase the actual remaining years of oil. At the same time, demand for oil is expected to rise, which will decrease the number of years.

FOTW 125 image

Source: Calculations by J. Maples, Trancon, Inc. using data from U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Information Administration, International Energy Annual 1998, January 1999. Production for 1998: Table G1; reserves as of Jan. 1, 1999: Table 8.1, original source Oil & Gas Journal.

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