You we Open to sanctions on oil and gas flows from RussiaBut attacking its exports now could help Moscowthe White House said this Wednesday (2), when Oil prices hit an 11-year high Supply disruptions increased.
after Russia’s invasion of UkraineThe White House imposed sanctions on technology exports to Russian refineries and the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which has not been opened. So far this has not affected Russian oil and gas exports as the Biden administration is assessing the effects on global oil markets and US energy prices.
“We have no strategic interest in reducing global energy supply … which would raise prices at the pump for Americans,” company spokeswoman Karen-Jean-Pierre said at a White House news conference.
The US government has warned that it could block Russian oil if Moscow escalates its aggression against Ukraine. “It’s certainly on the table, but we need to assess the implications that it will have,” White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki told MSNBC on Wednesday.
Deputy Director of the National Economic Council, Bharat Ramamurti, told MSNBC that the White House does not want to take any action yet.
“Attacking Russian oil and gas at this time would have an impact on American consumers and could actually backfire in terms of raising oil and gas prices internationally, which could mean more profits for the Russian oil industry,” he said.
“So we don’t want to see that now.”
The Biden administration has gone to great lengths to say it has not yet targeted Russian oil sales as part of Extensive economic sanctions imposed on Moscow since last week.
However, merchants and banks avoided Russian oil shipments via pipelines and tankers, fearing it would be seen as financing the invasion, and disrupting energy markets.
Some US lawmakers have pushed for legislation that analysts say could raise gasoline prices.
The top Democrat and Republican member of the Senate Energy Committee introduced a bill that would ban the import of Russian oil, liquid fuels and liquefied natural gas. The United States imported an average of more than 20.4 million barrels of crude and refined products per month from Russia in 2021, about 8% of net U.S. fuel imports, according to the Energy Information Administration.
A Manchin spokesperson said Democratic Senator Joe Manchin and Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski are working to lobby support for their bill.
The United States has imposed sanctions on Russian oil refineries, and banned the export of certain technologies, a move that could impede Russia’s modernization of these plants.
Almost a week after Moscow invaded Ukraine, US CLc1 crude closed on Wednesday at $110.60 a barrel, its highest close since May 2011, while Brent crude LCOc1 hit its highest level since June 2014 at $112.93.
Meanwhile, OPEC+ oil producers at their meeting on Wednesday agreed to maintain modest production increases, providing little comfort to the market or consumers.
On Tuesday, the United States and its allies agreed to release 60 million barrels of oil reserves to help offset supply disruptions.
“We want to reduce the impact on the global market … and the impact of energy prices on the American population,” Psaki said. “We are not trying to harm ourselves, we are trying to harm President Putin and the Russian economy.”
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