By George Frankling
Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has ranked Nigeria its second biggest crude oil exporter by volume, climbing four places to push Iran and Venezuela to the back stage and only out paced by Saudi Arabia.
According to OPEC Annual Statistics for 2010/2011 just released, Nigeria exported an average 2.46 million bpd of crude oil in 2010. OPEC heavyweight Saudi Arabi topped the chart with an export volume of 6.64 million bpd, while Iran, was third at 2.24 million b/d.
The OPEC statistics revealed that Nigeria earned $70.58 billion from the oil exports.
Nigeria’s oil exports had been disrupted by years of violent campaign by militants in the main oil producing Niger Delta region. Attacks on oil producing facilities between 2006 and 2009 cut the country’s production to around 1.3 million b/d until a government amnesty offer to the militants ended hostilities in the region.
However, Nigeria ranked seventh amongst the 12-member nations of the organisation, in terms of proven crude oil reserves, with the West African country’s reverves put at 37 billion barrels. Venezuela tops with 296.5 billion reserves followed by Saudi Arabia with 264.5 billion barrels of reserves.