Donald Trump has called on the Organization of Oil Exporting Countries to up its output, triggering a slide in oil futures.
In a tweet posted on Thursday, the US president said: “Very important that Opec increase the flow of oil. Worlds Markets are fragile, price of Oil getting too high. Thank you!”
International Brent crude oil futures eased following the remark, slipping 1% to $67.20 a barrel at 1415 GMT, while West Texas Intermediate was trading at $58.90, a near 1% fall.
Opec next meets to discuss supply levels in Vienna on 17 and 18 April, but Saudi Arabia – the cartel’s most influential member – has already stated it will keep production “well below” 10m barrels per day in April.
Oil prices were trading at well over $80 last October, but supply gluts – in large part caused by a boon in US shale production – caused prices to fall. In response, Opec, along with key ally Russia, has sought to underpin prices by curtailing production from January. The price of Brent has risen by around 25% so far this year.
Production has also slumped in Venezuela, with its industry stymied by sanctions and power cuts, while US sanctions have affected Iranian exports.
Trump has long called for lower oil prices, and has been vocal in criticising Opec.
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