Trump authorizes release of 'strategic reserve' to control rising oil price

2019-09-16 12:50:58

President Donald Trump says he has authorized the release of the US' "strategic petroleum reserve" in a bid to control the global oil prices, which are already hiking after 10 Yemeni drones attacked Saudi Aramco facilities.

"Based on the attack on Saudi Arabia, which may have an impact on oil prices, I have authorized the release of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, if needed, in a to-be-determined amount sufficient to keep the markets well-supplied," Trump said in a tweet early Monday.

"I have also informed all appropriate agencies to expedite approvals of the oil pipelines currently in the permitting process in Texas and various other States," he added.

His comments came shortly after the Brent crude, the global gauge of oil prices, soared 13% to $68.13 a barrel following the Yemeni operation.

Ten drones flown by Yemen's Ansarullah movement targeted Saudi Arabia’s key oil facilities in Abqaiq and Khurais on Saturday. The attacks shut down about 50 percent of the kingdom’s crude and gas production, and cut the state oil giant’s crude oil supply by around 5.7 million barrels per day.

An oil industry source briefed on the developments said on Sunday it is unclear how long the oil production shutdown will continue, as it is impossible to fix the "big" damages overnight.

Aramco has given no timeline for output resumption. However, a source close to the matter told Reuters the return to full oil capacity could take "weeks, not days".

BS

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