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Politics Trump Pledges Support for Embattled Oil Industry

04:55  04 april  2020
04:55  04 april  2020 Source:   online.wsj.com

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Trump Eyes Global Oil Output Cut of 10 Million Barrels a Day. Listen to article. There’s no doubt that the industry could benefit from some intervention. With global oil demand slashed Trump ’s tweet contained no such pledge . Still, a meeting between the president and several CEOs

Trump first touted the idea of global cutbacks on Thursday, and it now looks to be gaining traction. Vladimir Putin, in a meeting Friday with Russia’s oil - industry bosses, said trimming global oil production by about 10 million barrels from first-quarter levels is possible.

Donald Trump standing in front of a mirror posing for the camera © Doug Mills/Bloomberg News

WASHINGTON—President Trump promised oil-industry leaders the government would help revive the sector during a much anticipated White House meeting Friday.

Chief executives of Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp. and leaders of seven other energy companies joined the president as the new coronavirus pandemic slows the economy and ravages the energy business. Dwindling demand has helped to halve crude prices since January and more than 70 U.S. oil companies, already heavy with debt, are at risk of bankruptcy, energy analytics firm Rystad Energy said Friday.

“The entire world is shut down trying to get rid of this scourge,” President Trump said about the pandemic before introducing oil executives at the meeting. “We’ll work this out and we’ll get our energy business back.”

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Supported by. Deal or no, Mr. Trump ’s unusual oil diplomacy and his eagerness to claim a victory reflects his growing anxiety about the United States’ coronavirus-gripped economy. President Trump said on Thursday that he did not agree to cut American oil production in return for cuts from Russia

Oil is trading lower after President Donald Trump sent prices soaring yesterday. Oil is trading lower after President Donald Trump sent prices soaring yesterday. He tweeted that he expected Russia and Saudi Arabia alone to cut about 10 million barrels a day, but later Moscow said it hasn’t reached any

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The first part of the meeting, mostly introductions and platitudes, ended after an hour. President Trump said there would be a news conference to discuss more developments later Friday.

Saudi Arabia and Russia are pressing the U.S. to coordinate cuts to oil output in an attempt to stabilize prices. The outcome of a virtual emergency meeting the two are planning for Monday with the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries may largely depend on whether President Trump and U.S. oil companies can reach a consensus on U.S. production cuts.

While some in the industry want the Trump administration to pressure the Saudis and Russians, many large U.S. oil companies oppose cooperation between the world’s three biggest crude-producing nations, which would be unprecedented. Exxon Mobil and Chevron have lobbied against any market intervention, and the possibility wasn’t discussed in the first part of the meeting.

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Some smaller companies that drill U.S. shale wells want the government to intervene aggressively. Pioneer Natural Resources has pushed to find ways for the U.S. to join the plan led by Saudi Arabia and Russia. Continental Resources and its founder and Executive Chairman Harold Hamm, who was at the meeting, have pushed for aggressive tactics such as anti-dumping measures or U.S. government investigations of the Saudis for flooding the market.

President Trump and administration officials have been working diplomatic channels to stabilize the market and have been exploring a wide range of domestic solutions. But options are limited to help beleaguered U.S. oil-and-gas companies in part because of U.S. antitrust laws and strong differences within the industry, making the prospect of any agreement challenging.

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The Trump administration is taking action to boost U.S. demand for corn-based ethanol and soybean-based biodiesel The agencies praised President Donald Trump , saying he brokered the deal on U.S. biofuel policy, terrain that divides two of his key political constituencies: agriculture and the oil industry .

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President Trump spent the early parts of the meeting touting the potential for an infrastructure package to go through Congress, though that idea is in only its earliest phases and has failed to gain traction at other times during President Trump’s term. And he mentioned a plan to rent empty space in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to store oil for the private sector, a plan with wide support but with little capacity to make a material difference.

President Trump during a briefing said oil executives didn’t ask for a bailout. “It was really more of a discussion than asking. We did discuss the concept of tariffs because, as you know, this was a dispute among a couple of countries,” he said.

Referring to Russia and Saudi Arabia, he said, “they want to get it resolved.”

The president was asked if he was considering tariffs on Saudi oil. He said that tariffs are a “tool in the toolbox” but he isn’t considering them at this time.

“I think they are going to settle their dispute very quickly,” President Trump predicted.

Write to Timothy Puko at tim.puko@wsj.com and Christopher M. Matthews at christopher.matthews@wsj.com

Trump pledges to help Mexico meet output cuts sought by OPEC .
An agreement reached between Saudi Arabia and Russia to reduce oil production appeared to stumble after Mexico declined to cut its own output.An agreement reached on Thursday between Saudi Arabia and Russia to reduce oil production by millions of barrels per day appeared to stumble after Mexico declined to cut its own output by as much as 400,000 barrels per day. But Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said on Friday his country would reduce its production by 100,000 barrels per day, and that the United States would contribute another 250,000 barrels per day in cuts to help Mexico — a pledge that Trump seemed to confirm.

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