Middle Eastern Oil Resources - A Curse or a Blessing?
Middle Eastern Oil Resources – A Curse or a Blessing?
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Much of the current unrest in the Middle East centers on issues related to oil exports - Middle Eastern Oil Resources - A Curse or a Blessing? introduction? Actually, if one were to look at the history of the Middle East and the global oil market one could point out the crises over Middle East oil have been occurring since the end of World War One. This has led to many perceiving the massive oil reserves in the Middle East to be somewhat of a curse. But, is oil truly a curse for the Middle East? In reality, the answer is no because with the absence of oil the economies of the Middle East nations would completely collapse.
Oil remains a natural resource that the world relies on for fuel, electricity and other essentials. In the absence of the viable ability to harness other forms of alternative energy oil remains the most precious commodity in the world. The Middle East sits atop many vast oil reserves and that means Middle Eastern nations have a viable export the rest of the world needs. This brings in billions of dollars into the economy of the Middle East. Now, some may point out that the Middle East is primarily a poor region of the world, but imagine what the region would be like without the oil industry?
The oil industries in the Middle East provide jobs, benefits and pensions to many millions of people and their families. If there were no oil reserves then there would be no oil industry. In such an absence what could possibly fuel the economies of Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, etc?
Granted, there has been much strife and political unrest in certain oil producing countries but not in every country. Libya, for example, has been relatively stable for 25 years and this can be considered a model for other regions that might experience such calm in the future. So, the oil reserves really are not a curse for their host countries.
Kovarik, B. (2003) “The Oil Reserve Fallacy.” Retrieved 11 April 2008 from