Oil is on the rise. One can get this impression at least when looking at the demand in the ten largest oil consumers in the world. Six of the leading nations consumed more fossil fuel in 2019 than the year before. That emerges from the annual energy report of the oil company BP.
One reason for the trend towards oil was possibly the drop in prices. On the crude oil market, conflicts between the USA and Iran and China have resulted in falling prices. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) reduced their production. The drop of two million barrels was the biggest drop since 2009, according to BP.
Countries with the highest consumption of oil
In the corona crisis, the situation for the industry worsened. In April 2020, the price of a barrel of Brent crude fell to its lowest level in 20 years. However, many countries continue to have a high demand for crude oil and have even increased it. These countries consume the most oil in the world:
@imago images / Larry MacDougal
# 10 Canada
Canada consumed 4.50 exajoules of oil in 2019, according to the BP. That’s a lot when you consider that the North American country only has around 38 million inhabitants. In terms of population, it is the second smallest country in the top 10. Canada’s oil demand fell by 2.0 percent compared to 2018, according to the annual report. On the list of the largest oil consumers followed Canada, Iran, Indonesia, Mexico and the United Kingdom. So that you can get an idea of how much an exajoule is: According to the Federal Environment Agency, Germany’s total primary energy consumption was just under 13 exajoules in 2019.
@imago images / Rupert Oberhäuser
# 9 Germany
Six countries in the top 10 consumed more oil in 2019 than in the previous year. Germany is one of them. In addition, the Federal Republic of Germany is the only European country in the top group of the largest oil consumers. However, Germany is by far the most populous state in the European Union. In 2019, consumption in Germany rose by 0.9 percent to 4.68 exajoules. According to BP, consumption fell by an average of 0.8 percent annually between 2008 and 2018.
@imago images / Fotoarena
# 8 Brazil
Brazil’s demand for crude oil rose in 2019 by 0.8 percent to 4.73 exajoules. That meant eighth place worldwide.
@imago images / Imaginechina-Tuchong
# 7 South Korea
South Korea cut its oil consumption by 1.3 percent to 5.30 exajoules in 2019. That was the largest proportional decline in the top 10. Another country came up to this value.
@imago images / ITAR-TASS
# 6 Russia
By contrast, Russia consumed more oil in 2019 than the year before. According to BP, consumption rose by 1.1 percent to 6.57 exajoules. That corresponded to the annual growth of the past ten years.
@imago images / photothek
# 5 Saudi Arabia
The oil nation of Saudi Arabia is also one of the countries that consumed more oil in 2019. The requirement increased by 0.9 percent to 6.92 exajoules. With around 34 million inhabitants, Saudi Arabia is the country with the smallest population after Canada in the top 10.
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# 4 Japan
Japan’s oil consumption fell by 1.3 percent to 7.53 exajoules in 2019. In terms of percentage decline, Japan shared first place with Korea in the top 10.
@imago images / ZUMA Wire
# 3 India
The world’s most populous countries are in the top 3 when it comes to oil consumption. According to the BP report, India came third in 2019. Consumption rose by 2.9 percent to 10.24 exajoules. The plus was at least twice as high as in the previous nations. But one country was also able to top this growth.
@imago images / VCG
# 2 China
China likes to present itself as a pioneer in electromobility and green electricity. But this is not reflected in the consumption of crude oil. According to the BP report, it rose by 5.0 percent to 27.91 exajoules in 2019. That was by far the biggest plus in the top 10. Nevertheless, the People’s Republic was still a long way from being the world’s largest oil consumer.
@imago images / Rüdiger Wölk
# 1 USA
The US remained the world’s largest oil consumption country in 2019. The total decreased 0.3 percent to 36.99 exajoules. According to BP, the United States accounted for 19.2 percent of the world’s crude oil in 2019. According to the report, oil consumption there has remained almost constant since 2008.