President Trump requested that Saudi Arabia’s King Salman boost his country’s oil production by 2 million barrels in order to offset any potential shortages caused by turmoil and unrest in Iran and Venezuela.
Saudi Arabia, the world’s top oil producer, could pump as much as 11 million barrels of oil per day in July, according to Reuters.
The decision follows a meeting of oil ministers from around the globe at the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) in Vienna, where they decided on a production increase in order to keep prices low. In January, OPEC producers agreed to reduce output to help balance the market after a glut of supply caused a steep fall in prices.
Trump applauded the decision to increase supply, writing on Twitter that OPEC needs to “keep the prices down.”
Concern of a potential lower supply and thus higher prices have been spurred by the economic crisis in Venezuela and U.S. sanctions on Iran (the White House is pushing countries to stop imports of Iranian oil after it withdrew from the Obama-era nuclear deal with Tehran).
“Just spoke to King Salman of Saudi Arabia and explained to him that, because of the turmoil & disfunction [sic] in Iran and Venezuela, I am asking that Saudi Arabia increase oil production, maybe up to 2,000,000 barrels, to make up the difference…,” the president wrote on Twitter. “Prices to [sic] high! He has agreed!”