Top 14 Countries With The Most Natural Resources: The world has an abundance of natural resources which can be found in various countries across the globe. While each country is blessed with some natural resources, some others are blessed with more. This article shares an insight on these countries blessed with the most Natural resources in the World.
What Are Natural Resources?
Natural resources are natural substances produced and provided by nature, extracted and used by humans to make more complex products or for other economic gains. Natural resources occur naturally as they exist without any human action. Hence, we can say that countries are blessed with Natural resources because they occur naturally in these countries without human intervention, and can be extracted and utilized by these countries for Economic and Social gains, and to meet the needs of citizens of the country.
Natural resources may be renewable or non-renewable natural resources.
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Renewable Natural Resources: As the name implies, Renewable natural resources are natural resources that can be renewed or replenished naturally. That is to say that such Natural resources can never run out, it can grow again, cannot be used up, and can be restored. Examples of Renewable natural resources includes: Water resources, solar energy, Oxygen, and Timber.
Non-Renewable Natural Resources: Non-renewable Natural resources are Natural resources that are available in finite quantities. Hence can be permanently depleted, used up, and cannot be replaced by natural means. Examples of non-renewable Natural resources include Coal, Petroleum, Fossil fuel, Natural Gas, Silver, cooper.
Having considered the two forms of Natural resources, it is important we look into the countries with an abundance of Natural resources.
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Top 14 Countries With The Most Natural Resources In The World 2024
In no particular order, here is the list of countries with the most natural resources in the world:
1. United States of America: The United States of America is blessed with natural resources such as Coal, Copper, Timber, Natural gas, and mineral resources.
The U.S.A is the leading producer of coal in the world, accounting for over 25% of the global coal reserves and producing large quantities of coal which are used for generating electrical power and producing electricity.
According to the forest inventory and analysis fiscal year report, roughly about 34.5% of the United States is forested. That is to say that 34.5% of the United States is covered by forest, thus resulting in its abundance of Timber and other forest resources. The United States is currently the largest producer of Timber in the world and a leading state in the production of Agricultural products.
Furthermore, the United States has an abundance of Mineral resources such as Copper, lead, iron, bauxite, uranium, and oil and gas. It has currently carved a niche as one of the best Oil-producing countries in the world.
2. China: China is so rich in the top drawing Natural resources in the world. As a matter of fact, China has deposits of every mineral resource found so far in the world, and it is the World’s top mining country; dominating in domestic mining of minerals and metal resources such as Gold, Lead, Zinc, Iron ore, Coal, and cobalt.
China is also the top producer of Coal, Barite, Bauxite, Silver, Graphite, Steel, Tungsten, mercury, phosphate, and rock. Given its arable land and economic efficiency, China has one of the largest agricultural outputs in the world and is a major producer of Rice, Wheat, Cotton, Barley, Corn, Tea, Maize, and potatoes. It is also the World’s leading producer of Pigs, Chicken, sheep, cattle, and eggs.
China is further a leading country worldwide in Coal, rare earth metals, and Timber. It also accounts for about 2.0% of the World’s total oil reserves and is still a major producer of crude oil.
3. Russia: Russia is a very rich country in Raw materials and mineral resources. It is self-sufficient to nearly all industrial raw materials in the world and is dominant in the abundance of Natural resources such as tungsten, lead, gold, manganese, diamond, nickel, tin, uranium, iron ore, titanium, Oil and Natural gas, and rare earth.
Russia is the second-largest exporter of rare earth metals in the World. It has the second largest deposit of coal and the third-largest reservoir of Gold. It also has the biggest mining industry and is the richest country in the world based on Natural resources, as it’s Natural resources are worth over $ 76 trillion.
4. Niger: Niger is a landlocked western African country. Despite its status as one of the poorest countries in the world, it is very rich in Natural resources.
Niger has natural resources such as Uranium, Gold, Coal, Iron ore, Tin, Gypsum, petroleum, and arable land. 15% of the country is covered with arable land, thus resulting in it’s proficiency in Agriculture which accounts for over 40% of the Country’s GDP, provides occupation for over 50% of the population, and is an important source of export earnings.
Niger further supplies over 40% of African uranium all over the world, and it has one of the largest underground uranium mines in the world and has over 4% of the World’s developable uranium reserves.
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5. Saudi Arabia: Saudi Arabia has natural resources which include: Zinc, Copper, Tin, Gold, Lead, and Iron ore. However, it is predominantly known for it’s Oil and gas and petroleum resources.
Saudi Arabia has the 5th largest Natural gas reserve and is one of the largest producers of Oil worldwide. The Oil and Gas sector accounts for over 52% of the Country’s Gross domestic product (GDP) and over 73% of its Export earnings.
Further, Saudi Arabia has the second-largest petroleum resource in the world, and possesses around 17% of the World’s proven petroleum resources.
6. Brazil: Brazil is rich in a variety of Natural resources such as Tin, Iron ore, Phosphate, Platinum, Manganese, diamond, coal, bauxite, uranium, nickel, timber, and Gold.
According to the Forbes list of top 10 Gold producing countries, Brazil is ranked 7th with a production rate of 107.0 tonnes, and it has one of the largest gold deposits in the world.
Brazil is also a renowned exporter and producer of oil and petroleum resources, and it is well earmarked for its production of Timber predominantly the Pine and Eucalyptus timber species which is used for roofing, cabinet, constructing, window frames, furniture, flooring, fencing, amongst other uses.
7. Venezuela: Venezuela is a country blessed with Natural resources such as Natural Gas, Iron ore, Nickel, Bauxite, Diamonds, Coal, and Gold. It has the second-largest reserves of Gold deposits, and it is a top-ranked producer of coal. Venezuela is also notable for it’s dominance in Petroleum and Oil and gas resources.
Venezuela has the 7th largest Natural gas reserves in the world. It also has the largest oil reserves and oil deposits in the World, and is a founder member of the Organization of Petroleum exporting countries (OPEC). Venezuela has been producing and exporting oil for almost a century now, and Oil and petroleum resources account for over 89% of the Country’s total exports.
8. Canada: Talking about Oil, Canada has the third-largest oil deposits/ reserves in the world after Venezuela and Saudi Arabia. It is also the 4th largest producer and third-largest exporter of oil in the world. Canada has an abundance of oil sands which accounts for over 70% of Canada’s oil production.
Asides Oil and Gas, Canada has other natural resources like Limestone, Rock, salt, gypsum, energy minerals like coal and uranium, metals like Cooper, lead, zinc, gold, silver, and it has Timber. Canada is the 5th largest producers of Timber, and is the 2nd leading global exporter of timber.
Additionally, Canada is the second-largest producer of Uranium. It produces about 13% of the World’s supply of Uranium and has the world’s biggest uranium mine (The McArthur river uranium mine).
9. Democratic Republic of Congo: The democratic Republic of Congo well known as DRC is one of the wealthiest African countries in the sphere of Natural resources.
DRC is blessed with natural resources such as Gold, Tin, Diamond, Copper, Coal, Tin, Diamond, Cassiterite, Zinc, Iron ore, and deposits of oil and gas, and Cobalt. DRC has the largest cobalt reserve in the world as it accounts for more than half of the world’s Cobalt reserves, and around 60% of the global production of Cobalt which is used for making Airbags in automobile, jet and gas turbines, magnets, catalysts for petroleum production, but to mention a few uses.
10. India: India is a very rich country in Natural resources. It produces over 40 minerals and is the largest producer of most.
India is the largest producer of Mica in the world, 4th largest producer of Bauxite, has the 5th largest coal reserve, 6th largest iron ore resource, 5th largest producer of Manganese ore, 6th largest oil producing country in the world, and is a leading lime producing country. These and more set India on high as a Country with one of the most natural resources in the world.
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Total resource value: $19.9 trillion
Metal & ore reserves: $1,588 billion
Oil reserves (value): not in top 10
Natural gas reserves (value): not in top 10
Timber reserves (value): 369 million acres ($5.3 trillion)
Australia is home to natural resources worth an estimated $19.9 trillion, including iron ore, coal, copper, uranium, gold and timber. Australia is a major producer of oil and liquefied natural gas while being just around 80% the size of the United States. At the end of 2021, its proven oil reserves totalled 2.4 billion barrels.
Accounting for 29% of the world’s coal exports, the nation is also the largest net coal exporter. Moreover, the nation has significant quantities of natural gas offshore the northwest coast, some of which it shares with Indonesia. Alumina, tin, silver, nickel, tungsten, rare earth elements, mineral sands, lead, zinc, and diamonds are some of its other natural resources.
Total resource value: $15.9 trillion
Oil reserves (value): 115 billion barrels ($13.6 trillion)
Natural gas reserves (value): 111.9 trillion cu. ft. ($1.3 trillion)
Timber reserves (value): not in top 10
The natural resources in Iraq total $15.9 trillion. Its arid landscape is home to petroleum, natural gas, phosphates, and sulfur. The oil that Iraq has, with proven reserves of 115 billion barrels, is its most abundant resource. Nearly 9% of the world’s total is represented by this. It holds the fifth-largest proven crude oil reserve position in the world and derives a significant portion of its income from the export of crude oil.
Many of these assets are still unexplored despite being very simple to extract due to political disagreements between the central government and Kurdistan regarding ownership of the oil. Also worth more than $1.1 trillion, Iraq possesses some of the largest phosphate rock reserves in the world. But the development of these reserves is utterly lacking.
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Total resource value: $27.3 trillion
> Oil reserves (value): 136.2 billion barrels ($16.1 trillion)
> Natural gas reserves (value): 991.6 trillion cu. ft. ($11.2 trillion)
> Timber reserves (value): not in top 10
The massive South Pars/North Dome gas field in the Persian Gulf is shared by Iran and Qatar. Approximately 16% of the world’s natural gas reserves, or slightly under one quadrillion cubic feet, are found in this nation. A $27.3 trillion valuation is assigned to Iran’s natural resources.
Additionally, with proven reserves of 136.2 billion barrels, the nation boasts the third-largest oil reserves in the world. This accounts for over 10% of the oil in the world. According to the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), this nation produced the fifth-most crude oil in 2020. In 2019, it produced natural gas at the third-highest rate in the globe.
Iron ore, coal, lead, sulfur, manganese, copper, zinc, and chromium are among its other natural resources. Its natural resources estimated value also includes cultivated land, pistachios, saffron, and fruits. Due to its isolation from global markets as a result of its refusal to desert its nascent nuclear development program, the country is having trouble realizing the monetary value of its resources.
14. South Africa — $2,494 billion in metal & ore reserves
Indeed, South Africa is a nation with a wealth of natural resources, and it is well known that the country’s economy has grown in recent years as a result of the abundance of its mineral resources. South Africa has significant deposits of gold and diamonds. Prior to China overtaking South Africa as the top producer of gold in 2007, South Africa had been a significant producer of metal for many years. As indicated by historical records, the Anglo-Boer War erupted after people discovered vast gold reserves in the Witwatersrand.
The South African mining business generates over 550 billion rand per year in revenue, contributing 20% of the country’s GDP yearly. Other minerals found in South Africa include platinum, copper, uranium, vanadium, coal, chromium, iron, zirconium, nickel, and many others in addition to the gold and diamonds that are the country’s most well-known exports. Moreover, South Africa has great climatic conditions and fertile terrain, making it ideal for agricultural activities. Wheat, maize, wine grapes, sugarcane and citrus fruits are among the principal crops produced in the nation. South Africa is undeniably rich in natural resources, which have contributed to the country’s prosperity.
Edeh Samuel Chukwuemeka, ACMC, is a lawyer and a certified mediator/conciliator in Nigeria. He is also a developer with knowledge in various programming languages. Samuel is determined to leverage his skills in technology, SEO, and legal practice to revolutionize the legal profession worldwide by creating web and mobile applications that simplify legal research. Sam is also passionate about educating and providing valuable information to people.