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Oil industry in Latin America - Statistics & Facts

Despite playing an important role in the global market and the economy of countries like Brazil, Mexico, and Venezuela, the oil industry in Latin America has seen better days. The region is home to nearly one fifth of global oil reserves, ranking only behind the Middle East in terms of volume. Yet, in 2020, it accounted for less than ten percent of the oil production worldwide, a share which has been consistently declining in the past decade.

Brazil: the new oil giant

Owning reserves adding up to nearly 13 billion barrels – the second largest in Latin America – Brazil is by far the leading crude oil producer in the region. After the discovery and early exploitation of deep offshore reserves known as pre-salt between 2010 and 2014, Brazil's annual oil production has since experienced a mostly upward trend, surpassing three million barrels per day (roughly the same output reported by Iran). Petrobras, the national oil corporation, is not only the largest in the region, but was also the most profitable oil and gas company in the world in 2020.

Mexico and Venezuela: former leaders in crisis

Meanwhile, Mexico faces a different situation, in spite of ranking second in Latin America and twelfth in the world in terms of crude oil production. Pemex, the state-owned company which once had exclusive rights over oil production and distribution in the country, has experienced a major production crisis in the past few years. In 2020, the company’s crude oil output sunk below 1.7 million barrels per day, a decrease of almost 35 percent when compared to the beginning of the decade.

Even more critical, Venezuela – which holds the largest oil reserves in the world – has seen its oil production decline by more than 80 percent in the past ten years. In fact, the once oil titan has recently lost its long-standing position amongst the top three Latin American oil producers, surpassed by Colombia. In addition, increasing economic sanctions have had a negative impact in the country’s oil exports, especially to the U.S. The dropping revenue from exports was aggravated by the unprecedented drop in crude oil prices worldwide, a result of decreased demand due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Key figures

The most important key figures provide you with a compact summary of the topic of "Oil industry in Latin America" and take you straight to the corresponding statistics.

Leading oil producing countries

Major players

Interesting statistics

In the following 5 chapters, you will quickly find the 32 most important statistics relating to "Oil industry in Latin America".

Oil industry in Latin America

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Oil industry in Latin America - Statistics & Facts

Despite playing an important role in the global market and the economy of countries like Brazil, Mexico, and Venezuela, the oil industry in Latin America has seen better days. The region is home to nearly one fifth of global oil reserves, ranking only behind the Middle East in terms of volume. Yet, in 2020, it accounted for less than ten percent of the oil production worldwide, a share which has been consistently declining in the past decade.

Brazil: the new oil giant

Owning reserves adding up to nearly 13 billion barrels – the second largest in Latin America – Brazil is by far the leading crude oil producer in the region. After the discovery and early exploitation of deep offshore reserves known as pre-salt between 2010 and 2014, Brazil's annual oil production has since experienced a mostly upward trend, surpassing three million barrels per day (roughly the same output reported by Iran). Petrobras, the national oil corporation, is not only the largest in the region, but was also the most profitable oil and gas company in the world in 2020.

Mexico and Venezuela: former leaders in crisis

Meanwhile, Mexico faces a different situation, in spite of ranking second in Latin America and twelfth in the world in terms of crude oil production. Pemex, the state-owned company which once had exclusive rights over oil production and distribution in the country, has experienced a major production crisis in the past few years. In 2020, the company’s crude oil output sunk below 1.7 million barrels per day, a decrease of almost 35 percent when compared to the beginning of the decade.

Even more critical, Venezuela – which holds the largest oil reserves in the world – has seen its oil production decline by more than 80 percent in the past ten years. In fact, the once oil titan has recently lost its long-standing position amongst the top three Latin American oil producers, surpassed by Colombia. In addition, increasing economic sanctions have had a negative impact in the country’s oil exports, especially to the U.S. The dropping revenue from exports was aggravated by the unprecedented drop in crude oil prices worldwide, a result of decreased demand due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Interesting statistics

In the following 5 chapters, you will quickly find the 32 most important statistics relating to "Oil industry in Latin America".

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