Countries with highest supply and demand for gasoline

(Published on August 24, 2015)

A handful of countries account for most of the global supply and demand for motor gasoline. Our analysis of data provided by the US Energy Information Administration shows that of the 22.5 million barrels per day (bpd) produced globally in 2012, around 71.2 percent come from the top 10 producing nations. Likewise, of the 22.6 million bpd consumed across the world in 2012, around 70.5 percent should be attributed to the 10 largest consumers.

The first chart shows the top ten countries with highest production and consumption of motor gasoline in terms of physical volumes. 2012 is the last year for which data are available for all major producers and consumers. As it is quite evident, the United States has a clear lead both in terms of supply and demand. The US alone accounts for roughly 40 percent of global gasoline production and 38 percent in terms of global consumption. It is not surprising that America is home of the world’s largest passenger car fleet. The US had some 121 million vehicles in 2012, followed again by China (87.4 million) and Japan (59.4 million), according to data by TheGlobalEconomy.com, our sister project.



The next chart shows the evolution of consumption in the three most gasoline guzzling countries. Starting from 2007, we can clearly see the gradual decline in the US demand. This is partly due to the sky-rocketing crude oil prices which were near all-time highs in 2007 and 2008. In the US, prices of crude oil affect to a large extent retail prices of gasoline because fuel taxes are very low compared to the rest of the developed world. Hence, expensive oil and gasoline led to lower consumption. Another reason for falling demand are the fuel efficiency standards for new vehicles that the US is gradually rolling out. It is expected that in the coming years the notorious gas-guzzling SUVs that many Americans love will be a thing of the past.

The graph also shows that somewhere around 2004 China overtook Japan as the second largest gasoline consumer and its consumption is on a steady rise ever since. The shift reflects the continuous growth of China’s economy as well as the country’s rapidly emerging middle class that wants more cars and other consumer products long seen as a privilege reserved for the rich nations.




Full 2012 ranking of 103 countries by gasoline production.

Full 2012 ranking of 192 countries by gasoline consumption.

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