US officials were notified about OPEC’s plans to cut oil production before a Sunday announcement that surprised markets but they do not know why the decision was made, a White House official said.
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“We were given a heads up,” John Kirby, coordinator for strategic communications at the National Security Council, told reporters.
Asked about reports that the cuts were related to US failure to quickly replenish the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, Kirby said “I would just say that I can’t even begin to speculate why this decision was made.”
The cuts are not advisable given market uncertainty, Kirby said, adding that the US had made that clear to OPEC.
The White House is focused on consumers, not barrels, he said, and will continue to work with producers and to ensure growth and lower prices for consumers.
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