UAE, Saudi energy ministers hit back at ‘NOPEC’ bill, say it could push oil prices up


UAE Energy Minister Suhail Al Mazrouei says moves by US authorities to enact NOPEC legislation would cause chaos in energy markets.

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Top OPEC ministers have hit back at new US legislation aimed at regulating output, saying such efforts would cause more chaos in energy markets.

UAE Energy Minister Suhail Al Mazrouei told CNBC on Tuesday that OPEC was wrongly targeted by the energy crisis, and measures by US lawmakers to disrupt the established production system could hurt oil prices by as much as 300%. to rise.

“If you hinder that system, you have to be careful what you ask for because if you have a chaotic market, you would see a 200% or 300% price increase that the world can’t handle,” Al Mazrouei told CNBC’s Dan Murphy. during a panel at the World Utilities Congress in Abu Dhabi.

The U.S. Senate Committee on Thursday passed a new bipartisan No Oil Producing and Exporting Cartels (NOPEC) bill with a 17-4 majority, marking a significant step forward in the decades-old proposal.

The bill, which aims to protect U.S. consumers and businesses from artificial spikes in energy prices, would open the alliance to antitrust lawsuits for orchestrating supply restrictions that raise global crude oil prices.

To take effect, it would now need to be passed by the full Senate and House before being signed into law by the president.

OPEC and its partners have faced pressure from consumer countries, including the US and Japan, to stop producing crude oil amid rising prices and rising inflation. On Tuesday, Brent oil was trading at around $102 a barrel.

Al Mazrouei acknowledged that some members were not meeting their production quotas, but added that the alliance was doing its part to meet global demand amid ongoing geopolitical pressures, namely the war in Ukraine.

“We, OPEC+, cannot offset the full 100% of the world’s needs,” he said. “How much we produce, that’s our share. And actually I bet we do a lot more.”

According to the latest OPEC+ survey by S&P Global Commodity Insights, the 23-nation OPEC+ alliance fell short of 2.59 million barrels per day in April.

Al Mazrouei was joined on the panel by Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman, who said OPEC and non-OPEC members should work together to tackle the ongoing energy crisis.

“I am very concerned about the holistic energy system that exists today,” he said when asked about the NOPEC bill.

“The world must work collectively, responsibly and comprehensively to provide for us and save the global economy,” he added.

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