WASHINGTON, DC - Today, 13 U.S. senators, led by Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska) and Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), wrote Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud urging the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to halt its recent efforts to boost oil production and lower crude oil prices as the United States and the rest of the world struggle with the economic impacts of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus pandemic. In recent weeks, Saudi Arabia has been engaged in actions in global energy markets that have led to a sharp decline in global crude oil prices.
The letter was also signed by Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), John Kennedy (R-La.), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), James Lankford (R-Okla.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), and James Inhofe (R-Okla.).
'As the United States and the rest of the world-including the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia-are dealing with COVID-19 pandemic response, mitigation and prevention efforts, the added impact of unsettled global energy markets is an unwelcome development,' the senators wrote. 'The United States has been a strong and reliable partner to the Kingdom for decades. In light of this close strategic relationship, it was greatly concerning to see guidance from the Kingdom's energy ministry to lower crude prices and boost output capacity. This has contributed to a disruption in global oil prices on top of already hard-hit financial markets.
'Senior Saudi government leaders have repeatedly told American officials, including us, that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is a force for stability in global markets. Recent Saudi actions have called this role into question. We urge the Kingdom to assert constructive leadership in stabilizing the world economy by calming economic anxiety in the oil and gas sector at a time when countries around the world are addressing the pandemic.
'We look forward to the upcoming meeting with your Ambassador to the United States, Princess Reema bint Bandar al Saud to discuss these issues further, and encourage continued dialogue and action on this vital issue.'
Over the last several days, Senators Sullivan and Cramer and others have been in contact with Trump administration cabinet officials and U.S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia John Abizaid to reinforce the senators' position that Saudi Arabia work with the United States to stabilize, not continue to lower, global energy prices. Later this week, Senators Sullivan, Cramer and other senators on this letter are scheduled to meet with Saudi Arabia Ambassador to the United States Reema bint Bandar Al Saud in Washington, DC.
# # #