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The Unstable Change Of Gas Prices Across The World

2072 words - 8 pages

The Unstable Change of Gas Prices Across the World

The price of gasoline is a major interest to almost everyone in the country and almost
everywhere in the world. It seems that every month or even more frequently, gas prices
are either rising or dropping but never staying stable. Gasoline prices are affected by
many factors, including the price of crude oil in the world market, supply and demand for
gasoline, local market competition, temporary supply interruptions, government
regulations, or taxes. Gasoline is produced by a distillation process where crude oil is
heated and fumes are captured and converted into many products such as kerosene, jet
fuel, and gasoline to name a few. Therefore the price of crude oil, which is extracted
from oil wells beneath the earth's surface, is a major factor in gas prices. The five
leading oil producing countries and their approximate shares of the world supply of oil
are: Soviet Union 21%, Saudi Arabia 17%, The United States 15%, Venezuela 4%, and
Mexico 4%. These five countries made up 61% of the world's oil production back in
1980. Even though the United States is a major producer of oil, it does not make them
self-sufficient. The United States uses more oil than they can produce and must look
toward foreign countries. Therefore, the United States is forced to deal with an
organization called OPEC The reason the United States goes through O.P.E.C., is not
only in its own interests, but also in the interests of its allies and in the interest of
maintaining world peace. OPEC which stands for Organization of Petroleum
Exporting Countries, is made up of 13 countries: Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia,
Venezuela, Qatar, Indonesia, Libya, United Arab Emirates, Algeria, Nigeria, Ecuador,
and Gabon. It controls approximately four fifths of the worlds oil reserves in the
non-Communist world. OPEC was founded in Baghdad, Iraq in September of 1960.
The headquarters were initially set in Geneva, but were later moved to Vienna in 1965.
OPEC was organized in response to oil producing countries that did not consult with
the Middle Eastern oil states before lowering their crude oil prices. The producers feared
that other countries would establish monopolies. The aim of OPEC was to create a
universal price between the countries, in order to ensure peace between oil producers
throughout the world. OPEC also wanted to provide its members with technical and
economic support in times of need, since not all the countries were completely stable.
Even though the goal of OPEC was to establish firmly unified prices among their
members, the organization was not always successful. In their quest for control over the
world market of oil production, they have run into several obstacles and setbacks.
OPEC has barely survived due to internal conflicts among its members. Since OPEC
almost has a complete hold on the worlds oil supply, the United States is extremely

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