Major oil consuming nations’ history

Since prevailing in the nineteen thirty-nine / nineteen forty-five war (World War 2), the former Allies turned against one another as it is so well said in Prime Minister Winston Churchill’s quotation in nineteen forty-seven : There is now an Iron Curtain along the Old Continent (Europe) ; quotation that symbolized the beginning of the Cold War Era which will last until the collapse of the Eastern Bloc and the disintegration of the Soviet Union in nineteen ninety one (1991) after the famous Mikhail Gorbatchev speech, result of this man’s Glasnost and Perestroika politics. As it became a central interest in geopolitics given its importance especially for defence industries in the climate of the Cold War, oil access became a priority for Western Nations whom were fighting the influence of The Soviet Union at the time. But this oil running meant as well dependence to oil and as such to oil producing nations, mainly Arab Nations so when the US backed israel in the Kippur War (nineteen seventy-three), Arab leaders decided to take action and punished the US and the West by raising the crude oil prices : the prices went from fifteen dollars per barrel to seventy-five dollars per barrel in one day, equivalent to a multiplication by five ! The result was catastrophic ; this provoked a stock exchange crash, an inability of the oil companies to provide the necessary oil quantities for the Western economies resulting as such in a massive oil shortage, and most dangerous result was that the US could not provide anymore the necessary oil to sustain its military campaign in Vietnam ! All these result are summed-up today by experts under the name of the 1973 Crisis. This crisis accelerated the movement of globalisation, encouraging companies to move to Third World countries in search of cheaper labour force in order to reduce at once production costs. But in this climate of overwhelmingly increasing global prices, those who made their way are oil companies such as Exxon, Mobil, Royal Dutch Shell, Total, Elf, British Petroleum (BP), Chevron, Aramco etc. who saw their Gross Domestic Product (GDP) exponentially increasing. Until today Western Nations still depend on oil imports and these oil companies grow even stronger on international economic, and by extension political, stage mainly through merger actions such as Exxon-Mobil and Total-Elf-Finna ; actions that render these oil companies monopolistic in their sector imposing as such their rules on the consumer, and by extension given the importance of oil, on the global economy.

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