Donald Trump Pressures OPEC To Push Down Oil Prices

Photo by Gage Skidmore via Flickr

Donald Trump, the President of the United States of America, has slammed the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). He also urged the cartel to “get prices down.” He cited the protection that the United States provides for countries that are located in the Middle East.

Trump has called for Saudi Arabia to increase its oil production in recent months in order to combat the higher oil prices that are brought about by the effects of his own sanctions that were imposed on Iran.

Previously, he has also criticised the oil producer group by accusing it of bringing the prices higher.  The members of OPEC include Qatar, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia.

Shortly before the comments of the US President, the price of Brent crude oil had edged towards the $80 per barrel mark while West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude had crept above the $71 per barrel mark. These price increases come despite the increased production in Russia and Saudi Arabia.

In a tweet, Trump stated: “We protect the countries of the Middle East, they would not be safe for very long without us, and yet they continue to push for higher and higher oil prices!”

He added: “We will remember.

He continued: “The OPEC monopoly must get prices down now!”

The price of Brent crude fell to $78.62 per barrel, while WTI crude also dropped slightly to $70.69 in the wake of the comments of Donald Trump.

However, Rob Haworth, who helps in overseeing the $151 billion at U.S. Bank Wealth Management in Seattle, stated: “Will he get what he wants? Probably not.”

He added: “You’ve got room for OPEC to grow and probably offset declining Iranian production. On the downside, you are still losing Iranian and Venezuelan production.”

The OPEC and some oil producers that are not members of the group, including Russia, are scheduled to meet this coming Sunday in Algeria in order to revise the quotas on oil production.

It will be the last meeting of the group before the midterm elections of the United States which is scheduled next month.