The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is an international alliance comprised of 13 member countries.
In alphabetical order, the 13 OPEC members are Algeria, Angola, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Venezuela.
Overall, OPEC members shipped US$262.1 billion worth of crude oil around the globe in 2020. That dollar amount represents a -26.9% decline from $358.4 billion in 2016, and a -40.5% drop from $440.3 billion during 2019.
As a cartel, OPEC countries’ ability to collude and influence oil prices has weakened noticeably over the past 5 years.
In 2016, OPEC nations collected well over half (55.3%) of revenues from globally exported crude oil. Five years later, OPEC’s percentage share of the world total had dwindled to 47.9% for 2020.
OPEC Crude Oil Exports by Country
The 5 biggest OPEC suppliers of globally exported crude oil are Saudi Arabia, Iraq, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Nigeria. Combined, that quintet of leading OPEC crude oil providers generated over four-fifths (82.6%) of the cartel’s overall sales for crude oil exports during 2020.
- Saudi Arabia: US$60.8 billion (23.2% of OPEC crude oil exports)
- Iraq: $50.9 billion (19.4%)
- United Arab Emirates: $48.3 billion (18.4%)
- Kuwait: $31.4 billion (12%)
- Nigeria: $25.2 billion (9.6%)
- Angola: $20.2 billion (7.7%)
- Algeria: $6.9 billion (2.6%)
- Libya: $5.6 billion (2.1%)
- Congo: $3.5 billion (1.3%)
- Venezuela: $3 billion (1.1%)
- Gabon: $2.7 billion (1%)
- Equatorial Guinea: $2.2 billion (0.8%)
- Iran: $1.3 billion (0.5%)
While OPEC is headquartered the non-OPEC capital city of Vienna, Austria, the largest OPEC exporters of crude oil are Middle Eastern countries. The Mideast export nations (Saudi Arabia, Iraq, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Iran) accounted for approaching three-quarters (73.5%) of OPEC crude oil revenues during 2020.
OPEC Crude Oil Exporters: Fastest Growers and Decliners
The top gainer for higher OPEC crude oil sales from 2016 to 2020 was Congo via a 129.5% increase. In second place was the United Arab Emirates (up 91.8%) trailed by Iraq (up 9.9%) and Kuwait (up 2.3%).
The severest declines over the 5-year period belong to Iran (down -96.2%), Venezuela (down -85.7%), Libya (down -63.2%), Saudi Arabia (down -45.7%) and Algeria (down -39.1%).
Not one OPEC member grew its international sales of crude oil from 2019 to 2020.
The strongest export reductions year over year were experienced by Iran (down -90.4%), Venezuela (down -78.1%), Libya (down -77.8%), Algeria (down -53%), Gabon (down -43.6%) and Saudi Arabia (down -40.5%).
See also Crude Oil Exports by Country, Refined Oil Exports by Country, US Crude Oil Exports & Imports by State and Petroleum Gas Exports by Country
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Databases (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on September 28, 2021
International Trade Centre, Trade Map. Accessed on September 28, 2021
Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Companies, OPEC Member Countries. Accessed on September 28, 2021
United Nations Comtrade Database, OPEC Member Countries. Accessed on September 28, 2021
Wikipedia, OPEC. Accessed on September 28, 2021