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Saudi Oil Exports to Run Out in 20 Years

Posted By Daniel Greenfield On September 8, 2012 @ 12:32 pm In The Point | 3 Comments

There’s two ways to read the Gulf Arabs aggressive expansion into Europe. There’s the standard Jihad reading and the other is a fallback position. Oil isn’t forever and when you build a power base based on a commodity that isn’t going to be around forever, then you need a plan.

Think of what the Saudis are doing as building a new kingdom in a place that has better commodities than the Arabian Desert. And if this report is right, then that’s the only way for them to go.

The report is less about oil running out and more about what happened when the Saudis boosted their society up from tents and goats to mansions and limos and what that’s doing to their one commodity. A commodity that they need more of than ever.

The Saudis already consume a quarter of their 11.1m barrels a day of crude output. They are using more per capita than the US even though their industrial base as a share of GDP is much smaller.

Saudi Arabia Could be an Oil Importer by ~2030 — Saudi Arabia is the world’s largest oil producer (11.1mbpd) & exporter (7.7mbpd). It also consumes 25% of its production… Our analysis shows that if nothing changes Saudi may have no available oil for export by 2030.

This is less about the Saudis running out of oil and more about them running out of oil for export, but in a kingdom that runs on oil exports, that’s as bad as the news gets.

The Saudis can’t cut back too far on their domestic subsidies without triggering an uprising. So they’re sinking their claws as deep as they can everywhere else instead.


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