What is crude oil and who are the largest producers?Crude oil is unrefined petroleum that is made up of hydrocarbons as well as other organic materials. It is a fossil fuel that can be refined to create products such as transportation and heating fuels, as well as plastics, resins, solvents, and lubricants. It is a nonrenewable resource, meaning that there is a limited amount of it on Earth and it cannot be replaced naturally at the same rate as our current global consumption. In 2021, global oil production reached roughly 90 million barrels per day.
It follows that as the greatest exporter based on value, Saudi Arabia is also one of the world’s largest oil producers. As of 2021, the Middle Eastern country and OPEC member state accounted for a 12.2 percent share of oil produced, second only to the United States. As the U.S. is also the country with the highest oil consumption worldwide, it uses more oil domestically and exports less than its competitors. The U.S. export value was roughly one fourth that of Saudi Arabia.