Reports of 40% Increase in Saudi Oil Production Capacity by 2009 Are Misleading

True figure is closer to 14% contends Oil Depletion Analysis Center.

Published: 19-Jan-2007

Reports from the Associated Press of Saudi Arabian oil production capacity increasing by 40% by 20091 are very misleading, as the true figure is nearer 14%.

In a recent PowerPoint presentation given at the Washington D.C.-based Center for Strategic and International Studies, Nawaf Obaid, the Managing Director of the Saudi National Security Assessment Project, outlined exactly what the Saudis hope to achieve by 2009, and beyond2.

 From Slide 6, "Expedited Crude Production Expansion to 2009", of the presentation:

11,000,000 b/d Estimated sustainable capacity in March 2006
+ 2,350,000 b/d Estimated increase in capacity 2006-09
- 800,000 b/d Estimated natural production decline 2005-09
˜ 12,550,000 b/d Estimated sustainable capacity in August 2009

Therefore, net new capacity to 2009: 1.55 Mb/d, an increase of 14.1% on 11,000,000 b/d.

Notes for editors:

1. "Saudis to Increase Oil Output Capacity", Forbes, Thu 18 Jan.,

"Saudis plan to increase oil production and refining", International Herald Tribune, Thu 18 Jan.,
"Saudis to Increase Oil Output Capacity", The Washington Post, Thu 18

2. Saudi Arabia’s Strategic Energy Initiative: Safeguarding
Against Supply Disruptions, CSIS, 9th Nov 2006:

3. The Oil Depletion Analysis Centre (ODAC) is a UK-registered educational charity working to raise international public awareness and promote better understanding of the world's oil and gas depletion

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