Biden, allied leaders discuss new round of oil reserve release

Jordan Fabian and Josh Wingrove 3/25/2022

(Bloomberg) — The U.S. and other major economies this week discussed oil supply and the potential for another round of releases, President Joe Biden’s top national security aide said, raising the prospect of new government intervention to ease supply strains.

National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said oil prices and tapping emergency stockpiles were discussed in sessions Thursday in Brussels, where Biden met with NATO, Group of Seven and EU counterparts. It came up in particular with the G-7, and it was a “major topic of conversation,” he said.

“This was not just about talking; it was about thinking about the steps we can take,” Sullivan said, before signaling there could be an announcement in the near future. “I will not steal the thunder of of the administration on that issue.”

The U.S. has in recent months announced releases from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in a bid to curb oil price increases.  

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine last month, and ensuing sanctions, sent the price of crude soaring. Prices eased earlier this month before resuming their climb again. 

Sullivan spoke after Biden announced a separate pact, with the EU, to try and ease Europe’s dependence on Russian natural gas exports. The U.S. is aiming to coordinate a boost of non-Russian gas supply this year, while Europe is pledging a de facto minimum purchasing level to encourage increased U.S. production. 

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