The White House on Friday said Saudi Arabia has committed to increasing oil production in July and August—a move that will help “stabilize markets considerably.”
The commitment from Saudi Arabia came after bilateral meetings between President Biden and administration officials and King Salman bin Abdulaziz al Said and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, as well as Saudi Ministers.
“Saudi Arabia has committed to support global oil market balancing for sustained economic growth,” the White House said. “We have welcomed the increase in production levels 50 percent above what was planned for July and August.”
“These steps and further steps that we anticipate over the coming weeks have and will help stabilize markets considerably,” the White House said.
BIDEN ARRIVES IN SAUDI ARABIA, WILL DISCUSS HUMAN RIGHTS, ‘ENERGY SECURITY,’ OFFICIALS SAY
Also in the meetings, the White House said Biden welcomed the singing of a bilateral Partnership Framework for Advancing Clean Energy, with new Saudi investments to “accelerate the energy transition and combat the effects of climate change.”
The White House said the framework “focuses particularly on solar, green hydrogen, nuclear, and other clean energy initiatives.”
“By building upon existing collaboration between energy experts in our countries, we seek to enhance our efforts to tackle climate change and advance greater deployment of clean energy resources around the world,” the White House said, noting the partnership “will leverage public and private sector collaboration to advance the deployment of clean energy solutions while accelerating research, development, and demonstration of innovative technologies needed to decarbonize the global economy and achieve net-zero emissions.”
For weeks, the White House had stressed that oil production is “not the focus” of conversations Biden will have with officials in Saudi Arabia.
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) cartel and its extended group of allied producers known as OPEC+ agreed last month to ramp up oil production this summer after months of resistance amid soaring global energy prices.
White House National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan on Friday referenced that announcement, saying it would be discussed during meetings in Saudi Arabia.
“We are hopeful that we will see additional actions by OPEC+ in the coming weeks.”
WHITE HOUSE SAYS OIL PRODUCTION ‘NOT THE FOCUS’ OF CONVERSATIONS WITH SAUDI ARABIA
Also in the meeting, Biden and Saudi officials signed bilateral agreements on cybersecurity—one with the FBI and the other with the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency. The agreement was made in an effort to expand the existing bilateral relationship between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia to share information about cybersecurity threats and activities of malicious actors and to enhance the shared defense of our nations.
The White House also announced that Saudi Arabia committed to extending and strengthening the UN-mediated truce in Yemen, which has led to 15 weeks of peace in the region. The support included a pledge to provide more than $1 billion for development projects and fuel support.
Biden also reaffirmed the United States’ commitment to helping Saudi Arabia protect and defend its territory and people from “all external attacks, particularly those launched by the Iranian-backed Houthis in Yemen.”
WHITE HOUSE DEFENDS US-SAUDI ‘STRATEGIC’ PARTNERSHIP, AFTER BIDEN VOWED TO MAKE COUNTRY A ‘PARIAH’ STATE
Biden and Saudi leaders also discussed opening Saudi airspace to civilian aircraft flying to and from Israel; working together on space exploration; and cooperation on public health efforts.