These have been glorious years for OPEC. The organization has posted double digit petroleum revenue percentage growth for eight of the last 10 years, registering a new record of $1.26 trillion in 2012, according to OPEC’s Annual Statistical Bulletin (ASB) 2013, published on 29 July.

The good news is by no means limited to revenue growth, with a series of indicators all in positive territory. Crude production, exports and refinery output all grew for a third successive year. Drilling activity too tracks this growth. And the proven oil and gas reserves underpinning this revenue bounty have also posted multi-year rises (see table 2). Furthermore, impressive though they might be, these figures pale in comparison with those for gas production, which this and previous ASBs, show growing every year since 1983: 29 years on the trot! Gas has also emerged as an increasing revenue driver, enabling Qatar in 2011-12 to post OPEC’s strongest earnings gains (see table 1). (CONTINUED - 1205 WORDS)