Petroleum: Consumption, by country
in million metric tons
U.S.United States of America998.9
Saudi ArabiaSaudi Arabia166.0
South KoreaSouth Korea123.7
U.K.United Kingdom59.7
UAEUnited Arab Emirates50.3
  • Region: Worldwide
  • Time period: 2022
  • Published: Jan 2024

Data Analysis and Insights

Updated: Mar 30, 2024 | Published by: Statistico

United States leads in global petroleum consumption

The United States stands out as the largest consumer of petroleum globally, with a consumption of 998.9 million metric tons. This figure significantly surpasses the consumption of China, the second-largest consumer, by 339.7 million metric tons. The immense gap highlights the United States' dominant role in global energy markets and its substantial impact on petroleum demand.

Top three consumers account for over half of the list's total consumption

United States, China, and India together consume 1,895 million metric tons of petroleum, accounting for more than half of the total consumption among the top 20 countries listed. This concentration underscores the significant influence these economies have on the global petroleum market.

Asian countries prominently feature among top consumers

Nine out of the top 20 petroleum-consuming countries are in Asia (China, India, Japan, South Korea, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, and the UAE), with their combined consumption totaling 1,420.2 million metric tons. This reflects the region's growing energy needs, driven by rapid industrialization and urbanization.

European countries show more moderate consumption levels

European countries such as Germany, France, United Kingdom, Spain, and Italy have relatively moderate petroleum consumption levels, with a combined total of 334.5 million metric tons. This might reflect Europe's aggressive policies towards energy efficiency and a shift towards renewable energy sources.

Middle Eastern countries' consumption vs. production capacities

Middle Eastern countries, namely Saudi Arabia, Iran, and UAE, have a total petroleum consumption of 305.4 million metric tons. Given these countries' significant roles in petroleum production, their consumption figures also highlight their domestic energy needs amidst being major oil exporters.

The contrast in consumption between the top and bottom countries

The gap between the highest (United States with 998.9 million metric tons) and the lowest (UAE with 50.3 million metric tons) consumers in the list is 948.6 million metric tons. This disparity illustrates the wide range of petroleum dependency and economic scales among the countries.

Singapore's unique position

Singapore, despite its small geographical size, consumes 63.0 million metric tons of petroleum. This high level of consumption relative to its size is indicative of its role as a major hub for refining and trading petroleum products.

North American consumption patterns

North America, represented by the United States and Canada, shows a combined petroleum consumption of 1,097.1 million metric tons. This illustrates the region's significant energy needs, particularly for transportation and industrial activities.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is the largest global consumer of petroleum?

The United States is the largest global consumer of petroleum with a consumption of 998.9 million metric tons.

How much petroleum do the top three consuming countries use together?

The top three consuming countries, United States, China, and India, together consume 1,895 million metric tons of petroleum.

Terms and Definitions

Petroleum is a naturally occurring, yellow-to-black liquid found in geological formations beneath the Earth's surface. It is commonly refined into various types of fuels, including gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, heating oil, and is also used as raw material for many chemical products, including pharmaceuticals, solvents, fertilizers, and plastics.

Crude oil is a naturally occurring, unrefined petroleum product composed of hydrocarbon deposits. It can be refined to produce usable products such as gasoline, diesel and various types of petrochemicals.

A refinery is an industrial plant where crude oil is processed and refined into more useful petroleum products like gasoline, diesel fuel, asphalt base, heating oil, kerosene, and liquefied petroleum gas.

Fossil fuels are natural fuels such as coal, gas, and oil that were formed in the geological past from the remains of living organisms. They are non-renewable resources which provide much of the world’s energy.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is an organization consisting of oil-exporting nations that work collectively to regulate the price and supply of petroleum around the world.
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