Trump blasts OPEC, warns European companies against Iran ties

Iran to allow private sector to export oil, beat US sanctions

Iran to allow private sector to export oil, beat US sanctions

Reid said that he expected oil to stay around its current price, with a possible increase to $80 a barrel.

Hook said that the U.S. was willing to work with nations to reduce their reliance on oil production and the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has said they will increase production from other countries, like Saudi Arabia, in order to decrease pressure on oil markets.

"Your tweets have driven the prices up by at least US$10 per barrel", Iran's OPEC governor Hossein Kazempour Ardebili said in a message to Trump, carried by Iranian Oil Ministry's Shana news service. Last week, OPEC producers voted to ramp up crude production by up to 1 million barrels per day (bpd), a decision that should help contain the recent rise in global energy prices. Members of Opec and non-Opec countries have pledged to ease production cuts.

According to Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Saudi Arabia produces approximately 10 million barrels of crude per day.

The statement said the kingdom will coordinate with other producers.

Along with OPEC+ curbing output by 1.8 Mbd, Venezuela's crude oil production continues to decline and could soon drop under 1 Mbd, depriving the market-and specifically USA refiners-of a major oil supplier. But those moves may be tempered by an equal desire by the U.S. and other country for stable oil prices.

"There is a strong suspicion that geopolitical risk factors have played a significant role behind oil's aggressive appreciation", said Lukman Otunuga, research analyst at FXTM, in an email to Arab News.

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"We will not hesitate to take action when we see sanctionable activity and that is consistent with our policy of economic and diplomatic isolation against Iran". Trump has withdrew from a 2015 multilateral nuclear deal signed by Iran and P5+1, five permanent members of UNSC plus Germany.

USA crude futures CLc1 were down 58 cents at $73.56 per barrel by 12:00 p.m. EDT (1600 GMT), still in sight of Tuesday's 3-1/2-year high above $75.

Saudi Arabia on Thursday said that it would be reducing prices of its Arab Light grade crude exports.

Hook said more than 50 worldwide firms have already announced their intention to leave the Iranian market, especially in the energy and financial sectors. "But there is no conviction about the next direction for prices yet".

"Although further upside on oil may be witnessed in the near term, the prospect of higher OPEC production may create headwinds for bulls down the road", he told Arab News.

Trade tensions are likely to overshadow that trip.

"If Trump continues to believe that OPEC are not doing enough, we would not rule out an SPR (Strategic Petroleum Reserve) release from the USA, or possibly even export restrictions on petroleum products", ING said in a note. Gasoline and distillate stocks, which include diesel and heating oil, were also down, the API said.

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