The world’s largest export product is petroleum. In 2019 (the most recent year for which complete data is currently available), this commodity accounted for more than 1.3% of global GDP. That year, global crude oil production reached 4.5 billion metric tons.
Saudi Arabia has always led the world in monthly oil exports, but due to the surge in shale oil production and energy independence policies, the United States has become the world’s largest oil exporter, although it remains to be seen whether the United States can achieve its highest position in oil.
Although the world-class data only applies to 2019, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) has compiled a final list of major oil exporters in 2020. These countries account for more than two-thirds of global oil exports.
- Petroleum is the world’s main export product, accounting for 1.3% of global gross domestic product (GDP) as of 2019.
- Since 2019, the United States has surpassed Saudi Arabia as the world’s largest oil exporter, thanks in large part to the production of shale oil.
- Russia, Iraq, Canada, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Iran, the United States, Nigeria and Kazakhstan occupy the rest of the top ten.
1. United States
The United States is located in the northern hemisphere, borders Mexico and Canada, and is now the world’s largest oil exporter. In 2020, the United States exported an average of 18.6 billion barrels of oil per day, accounting for 20% of global exports. According to recent statistics, since 2014, the country’s international crude oil sales have increased by nearly 500%.
2. Saudi Arabia
The official name of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, which has long been the world’s largest oil exporter. Saudi Arabia was founded in 1932 and will account for 12% of global oil exports in 2020. The country is located on the Arabian Peninsula, which is about the size of Alaska.
Russia, a vast transcontinental country, is the world’s second largest oil exporter. In 2018, Russian oil exports accounted for 11% of global oil exports. In comparison of geographic area, Russia is twice the size of the entire United States.
As the northernmost country in North America, Canada is the world’s fourth largest oil exporter. In 2020, the country exported 6% of global supply. Due to its vast Athabasca oil sands scale, it is estimated that Canada still holds more than 10% of the world’s oil reserves.
Crude oil is the world’s largest export product in 2019.
Although China’s oil production capacity is not particularly well-known, China has increased its oil exports, making it the fifth place in 2020. That year, the country sold an average of 4.93 million barrels of oil per day, which accounted for 5% of total exports.
Iraq was first established in 1932 and was once one of the world’s three largest oil exporters. Iraq fell to sixth place in 2020, accounting for 4% of global exports. Iraq is located in the Middle East and has the size of California.
7. United Arab Emirates
Ranked seventh is the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The UAE is located on the Arabian Peninsula and is about the same size as South Carolina. In 2020, the UAE will account for approximately 4% of the world’s total oil exports.
The latest statistics show that in 2018, global crude oil shipments were US$1.113 trillion, a year-on-year increase of 34%; however, this figure is still down by more than 19% from the 2014 level.
Brazil’s oil production is approximately 3.8 million barrels per day, making it the eighth largest oil producer in the world. According to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), more than 90% of Brazil’s oil production comes from offshore deepwater oil fields. In addition, Brazil has proven oil reserves of nearly 13 billion barrels, making it the second largest oil reserves in Latin America after Venezuela.
Iran is the second largest country in the Middle East by land area, about twice the size of Texas. It ranks seventh in 2020, and exports account for about 4% of the global total.
Given its small size, it is impressive that Kuwait ranks among the world’s largest oil exporters. The country was founded in 1752 and is located on the Arabian Peninsula, about the size of Connecticut. In 2020, the country’s exports accounted for 3% of the world’s total.