Allowing exports of crude oil would have a beneficial effect on consumers and the economy alike, said Kyle Isakower, vice president for regulatory and economic policy at the American Petroleum Institute (API), commenting on a new report that examined the effect of lifting the export ban.
The report, prepared by ICF International and EnSys Energy, found that if crude oil exports were allowed the cost of gasoline and diesel fuel would be expected to drop, enabling Americans to save an average of $5.8 billion per year between 2015 and 2035. Moreover, lifting the ban would result in the creation of approximately 300,000 additional jobs by 2020.
The effect on the U.S. economy would be much wider, though. By 2020, the U.S. trade deficit could drop by $22 billion, while the economy could grow by $38 billion over the same period, with projections for a GDP increase of $27 billion per year through 2035.
Meanwhile, the oil industry is also predicted to benefit immensely from the move. Crude oil production is projected to rise by up to 500,000 barrels per day and an extra $70 billion could be invested in exploration, development and production in 2015-2020. Thanks to improved distribution of heavy and light crude, U.S. refineries could process an additional 100,000 barrels of oil per day by 2035, the report concluded.