Saudi Arabia and other OPEC oil producers are discussing an output increase, the group’s delegates said, a move that could help heal a rift with the Biden administration and keep energy flowing amid new attempts to blunt Russia’s oil industry over the Ukraine war.
A production increase of up to 500,000 barrels a day is now under discussion for OPEC+’s Dec. 4 meeting, delegates said. The move would come a day before the European Union is set to impose an embargo on Russian oil and the Group of Seven wealthy nations’ plans to launch a price cap on Russian crude sales, potentially taking Moscow’s petroleum supplies off the market.
Any output increase would mark a partial reversal of a controversial decision last month to cut production by 2 million barrels a day at the most recent meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and their Russia-led allies, a group known collectively as OPEC+.
The White House said the production cut undermined global efforts to blunt Russia’s war in Ukraine. It was also viewed as a political slap in the face to President Biden, coming before the congressional midterm elections at a time of high inflation. Saudi-U.S. relations have hit a low point over oil-production disagreements this year, though U.S. officials had said they were looking to the Dec. 4 OPEC+ meeting with some hope.
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