Oh, to be blessed with an abundance of oil and gas. It does not matter if you do not have much of everything else. A lot of countries in the Middle East are situated in a vast and empty desert, but with a massive amount of oil and gas at its disposal, these countries have become some of the richest in the world. With the money that these products have brought in, they have been able to buy everything that they need, and more.
For most of these countries, it has also been enough to buy peace and satisfaction among its citizens. Well, maybe there are a couple of exceptions, but by and large, a lot of the countries on the list do not have the freedoms so cherished in Europe but have remained peaceful and stable partly because of the petroleum card. The cost of gas is dirt cheap, making its citizens less likely to complain.
Here is a list of the top 10 countries with the cheapest gas prices.
10. United Arab Emirates – $1.70 per gallon
The United Arab Emirates is an Arab country in the southeast portion of the Arabian Peninsula. It is composed of seven emirates, namely Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Ajman, Fujairah, Ras al-Kaihmah, Sharjah and Umm al-Quwain. In 1962, it began to export oil. Its economy was transformed, as the government earmarked oil revenues for education, infrastructure and healthcare. It now has the seventh largest per capita income in the world, bolstered by the seventh largest oil reserves and the 17th largest natural gas reserves.
9. Oman – $1.66 per gallon
Oman is an Arab sultanate on the southwest portion of the Arabian Peninsula. It is ruled by an absolute monarchy, though it has a parliament with some oversight and even legislative powers. It is considered as one of the most developed and stable economies in the Arab world. Compared to its neighbors, Oman is just a small producer of petroleum, but it is still enough to have the 24th largest proven reserves of petroleum in the world.
8. Yemen – $1.62 per gallon
Yemen is an Arab country in the southern portion of the Arabian Peninsula. It is considered as one of the oldest centers of civilization in the area. It is the only country in the peninsula to have a republican form of government and the first to grant women the power to vote. It has very little oil reserves, however, especially when compared with its neighbors. It also does not have any proven reserves beyond 2017. It is one of the poorest countries in the Arab world. Still, it only charges a pittance for gasoline users.
7. Algeria – $1.09 per gallon
Algeria is the largest country in Africa and in the Mediterranean region. Its economy is heavily reliant on petroleum, and it is classified by the international community as an above average income country. It is a major producer of crude oil and producer and exporter of gas. It is the sixth largest exporter of gas in the world and has the 10th largest proven reserves of natural gas. It also has the 16th largest reserves of oil.
6. Bahrain – $0.98 per gallon
Bahrain is an archipelago just off the western shores of the Persian Gulf. Oil was discovered in 1931 and production began in 1932, the first to do so in the Arabian part of the Gulf. The country modernized at a fast pace as a result. It still remains as the country’s most exported product, accounting for 60 percent of receipts, 70 percent of revenues and 11 percent of GDP. The country has been diversifying by expanding its tourism and financial sectors.
5. Kuwait – $0.98 per gallon
Kuwait is an Arab country in the northeast edge of the Arabian Peninsula. Oil was discovered in the late 1930’s, but the industry only grew by leaps and bounds after its independence from the United Kingdom in 1961. The country still has the fifth largest reserves of oil in the world, with petroleum accounting for 95 percent of its revenues and 80 percent of its income. It is considered as the 11th richest country in the world on a per capita income basis.
4. Qatar – $0.88 per gallon
Qatar is an Arab country in the northeast coast of the Arabian Peninsula. Oil was discovered in 1940 and it has since transformed the economy, allowing it to not charge any income tax and to have an almost nil unemployment rate of 0.1 percent. It has vast proven reserves of oil and natural gas, and it is considered as the richest country in the world. It also has the highest human development index in the entire Arab world.
3. Turkmenistan – $0.78 per gallon
Turkmenistan is a country in Central Asia that used to be a member of the Soviet Union. The Karakum, or Black Sand, desert covers a majority of the country’s area. It however has the fourth largest reserves of natural gas in the world, allowing it to post double-digit economic growth rates. It supplies both Russia and Iran, and it also exports electrical power to its southern neighbors and other Central Asian nations.
2. Saudi Arabia – $0.53 per gallon
Saudi Arabia is the largest Arab state in western Asia and the second largest in the Arab world after Algeria. It also occupies majority of the Arabian Peninsula. It has probably the largest reserves of oil in the world, with majority of it located in its Eastern provinces. It accounts for 95 percent of its exports and 70 percent of its revenues.
1. Venezuela – $0.32 per gallon
Venezuela is a country on the northern coast of South America. It is one of the leading exporters of oil and has some of the largest oil and natural gas reserves in the world. It also has vast amounts of non-conventional oil deposits, like extra-heavy crude oil, bitumen and tar sands, which are equivalent to the entire reserves of conventional oil in the world. Despite these generous oil and gas reserves, its electricity sector does not even rely on it for power because of the availability of hydropower.
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