A White House statement following the OPEC+ decision to defy the Biden administration with an output cut for November vows to find new ways to temper OPEC’s control over energy prices.
Earlier on Wednesday, members of OPEC+ said they would cut November production quotas by 2 million bpd, citing the “uncertainty that surrounds the global economic and oil market outlooks”.
The decision immediately led to a more than 2% increase in Brent crude and WTI prices and goes directly against the Biden administration’s attempts to lobby Saudi Arabia for higher production to bring prices down.
Shortly after the release of an OPEC+ press release detailing the output cuts, the White House said, “In light of today's action, the Biden Administration will also consult with Congress on additional tools and authorities to reduce OPEC's control over energy prices.”
“The President is disappointed by the shortsighted decision by OPEC+ to cut production quotas while the global economy is dealing with the continued negative impact of Putin’s invasion of Ukraine,” two of Biden’s top aides, national security adviser Jake Sullivan and National Economic Council Director Brian Deese, said in a statement.
The White House warned that the OPEC move would “have the most negative impact on lower- and middle-income countries that are already reeling from elevated energy prices”.
In the meantime, the American Petroleum Institute (API) has criticized the administration’s energy policies, saying that dependence on OPEC and other foreign countries for our energy is a “choice”.
“We need to have stable energy sources that are from the United States to ensure that we have reliable and affordable energy here at home. Unfortunately right now, the United States is about 1 million barrels of production down from where we were in 2019. That was a choice,” API president Mike Sommers told Fox News.
The OPEC decision comes as the U.S. Department of Energy is reportedly being tasked by the White House to investigate whether a ban on gasoline exports would bring costs down for American consumers at the pump.
By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com
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