When most people think about Colombia, coffee usually comes to mind more so than coal or oil.

However, yesterday, the U.S. Energy Information Administration ("EIA") put a spotlight on the country's energy production when it published its Colombia Country Analysis Brief. The full EIA brief on Colombia can be found here.

Colombia may be a well-known exporter of high quality coffee, but the country also has significant energy exports that deserve more attention.

Colombia was the fifth-largest crude oil exporter to the United States last year.

According to the EIA brief, Colombia is South America's largest coal producer AND the region's third-largest oil producer, after Venezuela and Brazil.

In fact, "[i]n 2015, Colombia was the world's fifth-largest coal exporter."

  • Since Colombia produces so much coal, does the country itself run on coal?

No – according to the EIA brief, Colombia "relies on hydropower for most of its electricity needs and uses very little coal domestically."

  • How much coal did Colombia export in 2015?

According to the EIA brief, 85% of the 94.3 million short tons (MMST) of coal Colombia produced in 2015 was exported.

  • What about Colombia's oil?

Although the EIA brief states that "Colombia has fewer proved oil reserves than Argentina and Ecuador," it also notes that Colombia produces more oil than either country. The Rubiales oilfield is reportedly the largest producing oil field in the country.

The EIA brief putting the spotlight on Colombia's energy production helps us realize more details about the country's significant production.

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