Big movements in the price of oil can have significant effects on the economy, and although this key commodity is off its all-time highs, countries with the most oil within their borders are set to benefit, as demand for crude continues to rise.
With much of the world's existing reserves found in the Middle East, Gulf of Mexico, and a few other locations around the globe, individual countries benefit incredibly from their surprisingly high concentrations of oil.
As of 2011, the U.S. government estimated that the world has proven reserves in the neighborhood of 1.35 trillion barrels. This number represents the net amount of oil still in the ground that has a reasonable certainty of recovery when considering current political, economic, and technological challenges. Labeling subterranean oil "proved" reserves takes into consideration current feasibility, although there may be additional oil underground that is deemed unrecoverable.
With the most recent data from the Energy Information Administration and the CIA World Factbook, here are the countries with the biggest proven oil reserves. Click ahead for the list.
By Paul ToscanoUpdated 5 March 2012