PHOTO: GETTY_BLOOMBERG /SUSANA GONZALEZ
National oil companies (NOCs) are economic giants. They control at least $3 trillion in assets and produce most of the world’s oil and gas. They dominate energy production in some of the world’s most oil-rich countries, including the Islamic Republic of Iran, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, and Venezuela, and they play a central role in the oil and gas sector in many emerging producers.
NOCs are poorly understood because of their uneven financial reporting practices, and NOC governance has often been treated as a niche issue in public finance literature. A new report and accompanying database from the Natural Resource Governance Institute focus on the failure to rigorously scrutinize NOCs and the policies their governments employ to manage them, and how this failure carries major risks for dozens of economies around the world that depend on these companies’ sound management of public resources.
Heller, Patrick R. R., and David Mihalyi. 2019. Missive and Misunderstood: Data-Dhven Insights into National Oil Companies. New York: Natural Resource Governance Institute.
Victor, Nadejda. 2007. "On Measuring the Performance of National Oil Companies/Working Paper 64, Program on Energy and Sustainable Development, Stanford University Stanford, CA.