In its just released must read Statistical Review of World Energy, BP has many critical observations, the key of which, while not a surprise to most, is that as of 2010, the US is no longer the world's biggest consumer of energy. The new leader, with a 20.3% share of global energy consumption: China. Keep in mind that the Chinese economy is still (in whatever centrally planned terms it discloses) not even half the size of the US, thus one can only imagine how far this number will rise should China ultimately succeed in its goal of converting from an export-led to a consumer-led society. And here we have a market worried about a few million bpd in quota courtesy of the now defunct OPEC. From the report: "World primary energy consumption – which this year includes for the first time a time series for commercial renewable energy – grew by 5.6% in 2010, the largest increase (in percentage terms) since 1973. Consumption in OECD countries grew by 3.5%, the strongest growth rate since 1984, although the level of OECD consumption remains roughly in line with that seen 10 years ago. Non-OECD consumption grew by 7.5% and was 63% above the 2000 level. Consumption growth accelerated in 2010 for all regions, and growth was above average in all regions. Chinese energy consumption grew by 11.2%, and China surpassed the US as the world’s largest energy consumer. Oil remains the world’s leading fuel, at 33.6% of global energy consumption, but oil continued to lose market share for the 11th consecutive year." And in terms of production reserves: "World proved oil reserves in 2010 were sufficient to meet 46.2 years of global production, down slightly from the 2009 R/P ratio because of a large increase in world production; global proved reserves rose slightly last year. An increase in Venezuelan official reserve estimates drove Latin America’s R/P ratio to 93.9 years – the world’s largest, surpassing the Middle East."
There is much more in the full report, but three charts bear highlighting: the reserves-to-production ratio, the relative pricing of crude in real terms, and the major trade movement of Crude in the world in 2010. Bottom line: crude likely has a long way to go up unless the global economy promptly commences another 2008 mega deflationary episode.
Reserves-to-production (R/P) ratios:
And Real crude Prices since the Pennsylvania Oil Boom:
World trade movements of crude:
And the full booklet: