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Oil and refinery industry in Spain - statistics & facts

The petroleum industry can be broken down into two well-differentiated areas of activity. Petroleum exploration and extraction, usually referred to as the upstream sector, focuses on finding and exploiting hydrocarbon resources. On the other hand, the refining or downstream sector transforms crude oil into a wide range of derivative products. These include fuels like gasoline, diesel, and kerosene, and also organic chemical feedstocks that constitute the basis of products such as plastics, detergents, drugs, synthetic fibers, or agrochemicals.

Spain’s dependency on crude oil imports

The Spanish economy relies heavily upon oil imports to meet its energy needs, as petroleum remains the main source of primary energy in the country. In 2021, around 56 million metric tons of crude oil were imported, while domestic crude oil production amounted to only 5.8 thousand tonnes, a negligible contribution to the total consumption of the country. Nigeria, Mexico, and Libya were Spain’s main petroleum suppliers, covering more 40 percent of the total imports.

Refinery industry

In 2020, the Spanish refining industry employed around 200 thousand persons and generated a sales revenue of some 28.3 billion euros. Currently, Spain has nine oil refineries with a total processing capacity over 1.5 million barrels per day. Most of the refining capacity belongs to Repsol, the largest company within the sector, followed by Cepsa, BP, and Asesa.

Effect of COVID-19

During 2020, the consumption of most petroleum products in Spain experimented considerable reductions. For instance, the 95-octane fuel consumed in the country dropped from 5 to 3.9 million metric tones, while the consumption of automotive diesel was 3.8 million metric tons fewer than in 2019. However, the greatest decrease was registered in aviation kerosene, which, due to the drastic reduction of air traffic during 2020, plummeted to a third of the value recorded the year before.

Interesting statistics

In the following 6 chapters, you will quickly find the 37 most important statistics relating to "Oil and refinery industry in Spain".


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