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‘We don’t need Middle Eastern oil,’ Trump says

Posted September. 18, 2019 09:46,   

Updated September. 18, 2019 09:46


The soaring global oil prices stemming from drone attacks on oil production facilities in Saudi Arabia has drawn attention to the moves of a country with the largest amount of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR): The United States.

U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted Monday that “we are a net Energy Exporter, and now the Number One Energy Producer in the World.” “We don’t need Middle Eastern Oil and Gas, in fact have very few tankers there, but will help our Allies,” he added. “In a tweet Monday, Trump insisted the United States wasn’t reliant on Middle Eastern oil but would unleash its reserves to help allies,” The Washington Post (WP) analyzed.

However, U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry said in an interview with CNBC on Monday that he thinks it’s “yet a little premature in making in comments on whether or not the SPR’s going to be needed until we get a real handle on the length of time that this facility is going to be down.” He added that it’s “time for a coalition of tame and thoughtful energy producing and energy consuming countries to come together and put a stop to Iran’s malign activity.”

The surge in oil prices would not negatively affect the U.S. economy immediately, which has grown to be the largest oil producer thanks to the Shale Gas Revolution. Following drone strikes on Saudi oil facilities, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for October delivery on the NYMEX closed at 62.90 dollars Monday, increasing by 14.7 percent (8.05 dollars) from the previous trading day, the largest in about 11 years since December 2008. Yet, the price is still 7 percent lower than that of a year ago and the price rise felt by consumers is being relatively less sharp. “The average price of a gallon of regular gasoline in California was 3.631 dollars on Monday, almost exactly the same as a week earlier and a year earlier,” the Los Angeles Times reported.

Yong Park parky@donga.com