An oil tanker is being loaded at Saudi Aramco's Ras Tanura oil refinery and oil terminal in Saudi Arabia May 21, 2018. REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah
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The leader of Saudi Arabia promised U.S. President Donald Trump that he can raise oil production if needed and the country has 2 million barrels per day of spare capacity, the White House said Saturday, rowing back on an earlier Trump tweet that appeared to suggest the Saudis had agreed to boost output by that amount.However, a source familiar with Saudi Arabia's production plans told Reuters earlier in the week of the kingdom's intention to increase output by 200,000 barrels per day this month.Saudi Arabia along with other Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and non-OPEC nations, including Russia, had agreed on June 22 to boost production by a combined 700,000 to 1 million bpd, so the 2 million bpd increase would be at least double market expectations.The White House statement undercut a tweet by Trump earlier in the day when he wrote that Saudi Arabia had definitely agreed to produce more oil.The Trump administration is pushing countries to cut all imports of Iranian oil from November when the United States reimposes sanctions against Tehran, after Trump withdrew from the 2015 nuclear deal agreed between Iran and six major powers, against the advice of allies in Europe and elsewhere.
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