US President Joe Biden is rethinking the country’s relationship with Saudi Arabia after OPEC+ unveiled heavy cuts to oil production , confirmed White House national security spokesman John Kirby yesterday.
In an interview with CNN, he said: “I think the president’s been very clear that this is a relationship that we need to continue to re-evaluate, that we need to be willing to revisit. And certainly in light of the OPEC decision, I think that’s where he is.”
Kirby revealed Biden was disappointed with the cartel’s decision, and that “he’s willing to work with Congress to think through what that relationship ought to look like going forward.”
OPEC+, which includes OPEC and allies such as Russia, decided to reduce oil output by 2m barrels per day last week, in a bid to bolster oil prices which have slid below $100.
Prices slipped amid recession fears and expectations of reduced demand.
The White House is eager to keep oil prices down to ease the cost-of-living pressures facing consumers ahead of key mid-terms in November.
It is also concerned about tight markets raising the possibility of supply shortages in Europe.
Saudi Arabia is a leading member of OPEC and home to Aramco, the world’s biggest company and oil producer.
The county has been at the forefront of a push to reduce oil output over recent months, with calls for more supplies from the West falling on deaf ears.
Both countries are considered allies, however relationships have been frosty since the killing of US-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey.
Oil prices have rebounded following the OPEC+ cuts, but remain well below the $100 milestone, where they traded four months following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.