- Qatar is the largest exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the world, and the country's exports of LNG, crude oil, and petroleum products provide a significant portion of government revenues.
- Qatar was the world's fourth largest dry natural gas producer in 2012 (behind the United States, Russia, and Iran), and has been the world's leading liquefied natural gas (LNG) exporter since 2006. Qatar is also at the forefront of gas-to-liquids (GTL) production, and the country is home to the world's largest GTL facility.
- Qatar produced nearly 1.6 million barrels per day (bbl/d) of liquid fuels (crude oil, condensates, natural gas plant liquids, gas-to-liquids, and other liquids) in 2013, of which 730,000 bbl/d was crude oil and the remainder was non-crude liquids. While Qatar is a member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), the country is the second-smallest crude oil producer among the 12-member group.
- The first well, Dukhan 1, was drilled in 1939.
- 1949 - The first crude exports occurred and the first offshore concessions were granted
- 1960 - The Idd Al-Shargi and Maydan Mahzam fields were discovered.
- 1970 - The largest offshore field, Bul Hanine, was discovered
- 1972 - Bul Hanine came onstream
- 1974 - Qatar Petroleum was created
- 1984 - Qatargas was established
- 1994 - Production started in the Al Shaheen Oil Field
- 2001 - RasGas Company Limited (RasGas) was established by Qatar Petroleum (70 per cent) and ExxonMobil (30 per cent).
- 2010 - Qatar's LNG production capacity reached 77 Million tpa
- The state-owned Qatar Petroleum (QP) controls all aspects of Qatar's upstream and downstream oil and natural gas sectors, including exploration, production, transport, storage, marketing, and sale of crude oil, natural gas, natural gas liquids, liquefied natural gas, gas-to-liquids (GTL), refined products, and petrochemicals and fertilizers.
- Three oil fields account for more than 85% of Qatar's crude oil production capacity.
- Oil exploration activity in Qatar is ongoing, although not to the degree seen in other oil producing countries. The last major discovery in Qatar came in 1994 (the Al Rayyan field), and any supply growth in the near term is likely to come from increased output at Qatar's existing fields, particularly through the use of enhanced oil recovery (EOR) techniques. Operators have used EOR techniques in several fields, including Al Shaheen Oil Field, Dukhan Oil Field, Bu Hanine, and Maydan Marjam. Qatar's oil production comes from just a few fields, led by the Al Shaheen, Dukhan, and Idd al-Shargi, which combined, account for more than 85% of the country's crude oil production capacity.
- Qatar's total liquids production, which includes crude oil, condensates, natural gas plant liquids, and other liquids, was 1.6 million bbl/d in 2012, a slight decline from 2011 but up by more than 70% since 2003. Qatar produced over 1.2 million barrels per day (bbl/d) of crude oil and condensates in 2012, according to EIA estimates.
- Natural gas is at the center of Qatar's energy sector. Already the world's largest exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG), several recent developments in the country's natural gas sector could boost production in the short term.
- Qatar's dry natural gas production reached 5.5 Tcf in 2012, up from just 1.1 Tcf ten years earlier. The vast majority of Qatar's production comes from the North Gas Field, although some smaller fields contribute production volumes as well.
- The $10.4 billion Barzan Gas Project should boost Qatar's natural gas production from the North Field in the near term. The project consists of both onshore and offshore developments, including offshore platforms, pipelines, and a gas processing unit. Announcements by government officials and ExxonMobil indicate that the project—which began in 2011—will begin operations in 2014 and be capable of processing 1.4 Bcf/d of natural gas.
- For further information, see Exploration and Production in Qatar
- The Qatargas consortium includes QP, Total, ExxonMobil, Mitsui, Marubeni, ConocoPhillips, and Shell, while RasGas is 70% owned by QP and 30% owned by ExxonMobil.
- Dukhan Crude Oil is of high quality, with an API specific gravity of 40 degrees and sulfur content of 1.5%
- Al-Shaheen Crude Oil is a heavy and sour crude
- Qatar sends a small amount of natural gas via the Dolphin Pipeline to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Oman.
- Qatar exports nearly 85% of its natural gas as liquefied natural gas (LNG), and it has been the largest exporter of LNG in the world since 2006.
- Qatar's LNG export capacity is the highest in the world at 77 million tons per year (MMt/y), approximately 3.7 Tcf, split between Qatargas (42 MMt/y) and RasGas (35 MMt/y). The companies added 5 of the country's 14 trains in 2009 and 2010. The latest, the 14th train (Qatargas IV Train 7), came online in January 2011 with a capacity of 380 Bcf/y (7.8 MMt).
- Qatar is one of only three countries – South Africa, Malaysia, and Qatar – to have operational GTL facilities.
- Qatar’s Oryx GTL Plant (QP 51 percent, Sasol-Chevron GTL 49 percent) came online in 2007, but due to initial problems, was not fully operational until early 2009. At full capacity, the Oryx project uses about 330 MMcf/d of natural gas feedstock from the Al Khaleej field to produce 30,000 bbl/d of GTL.
- The Pearl GTL Plant (QP 51%, Shell 49%) uses 1.6 Bcf/d of natural gas feedstock to produce 140,000 bbl/d of GTL products as well as 120,000 bbl/d of natural gas liquids and liquefied petroleum gases (LPG). The plant's initial phase commenced in early 2011, and the first shipments of gasoil were sent out in June 2011. After initiating the second phase of development, Pearl GTL achieved full capacity in October 2012. In addition to being the largest GTL plant in the world, the Pearl GTL project is also the first integrated GTL operation, meaning it will have upstream natural gas production integrated with the onshore conversion plant.
- There are currently two refineries in Qatar, located in the major port cities of Umm Said and Ras Laffan
- The Qatar Petroleum Refinery in Mesaieed was commissioned in 1958
- The Ras Laffan Refinery, which processes Gas Condensates, was commissioned in 2009. The Ras Laffan Refinery Expansion Project aims to double the capacity of this refinery
- The Al Shaheen Refinery Project, is a 250,000 bpd refinery designed to process Al Shaheen Crude Oil. It is currently on hold