Over the last one hundred years, the oil and gas industry has experienced dramatic changes, including periods of expansion, contraction and price fluctuation. The industry can actually be characterized into three distinct periods, Public Sector Growth (1880 to 1935), National Oil Company Growth (1936 to 1985) and Public Sector Consolidation (1986 to Present). The paper address the cause and effects of each of the three periods, the changes that have occurred within public sector major operators, national oil companies and public sector independent operators and the overall impact of these changes on global exploration.


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