In South America, the economies of several countries depend on the production and export of oil. Venezuela, the largest oil producer of any country in South America, produces about 2.8 million barrels a day. This puts it in the number eight position in the world of oil producers.
South American oil also comes from other countries like Brazil that produces about 1.1 million barrels of oil a day. There are other oil producing countries in South America, but they do not produce enough to be ranked in the top twenty, internationally.
Just because some of the South American countries do not produce enough oil to be ranked internationally, oil is still a vital part of their economies. Benefiting in two separate but important ways, the countries have oil readily available. Two examples of this are Paraguay and Bolivia, where there was recently found oil, but specialists are investigating if it is profitable and worthy to get it out of the deep.
Oil is considered a non-renewable resource. It is for this reason that it is so valuable to have it available for export. With an irreplaceable product, every producer is important. Having the oil available is another asset in that it reduces each of these countries dependencies on foreign imports.
Since most countries prefer to control their own finances, having the oil on hand makes it easier to do so. By not having to rely on imported oil, the countries can manage their own money. This makes oil an especially valuable resource.
Oil, or petroleum, the raw material that is pumped from the ground, accounts for 2/5ths of the energy needs around the world. There are also many products such as plastics and asphalt that use petroleum as a raw product. Therefore, the discovery of oil in South America was of paramount importance to the economy of its oil producing countries. South Americas oil puts these countries in the position of competing on the world stage financially.
Bolivia Coastal®, located in Venezuela, and Marlim®, in Campos, Brazil have 30 million and 10 billion barrels of oil in reserve, respectively. These are two of the larger oil fields in South America.
Venezuela is the only oil producing country in South America that is a member of the Organization of Oil Producing Companies (OPEC). The other countries of South America may be blessed with oil reserves, but membership in OPEC gives Venezuela permission to have a voice in setting production and pricing numbers.
The United States imports about 12% of its refined oil from Venezuela. By importing oil from South American oil producing countries, the cost of transportation is greatly reduced, and this consequently triggers the North American economy growth.