'Please stop' tweeting about oil, Iran tells Trump

'Please stop' tweeting about oil, Iran tells Trump
OPEC representative Hossein Kazempour Ardebili has frequently blasted Trump for his tweets about the oil cartel.
2 min read
05 July, 2018
Trump at a coal rally during the 2016 election [Getty]

Iran's representative to OPEC called on US President Donald Trump to "please stop" tweeting about oil, adding that "with your frequent and indecent tweets oil prices have gone up 10 dollars".

Hossein Kazempour Ardebili was quoted by the oil ministry's website Thursday.

Trump has repeatedly called on the oil cartel to reduce prices. On Wednesday, he tweeted that OPEC is "doing little to help," adding that, "if anything, they are driving prices higher". 

Tehran blames rising prices on US sanctions imposed on Iran and Venezuela, founding members of the cartel. Last month, members of OPEC agreed to pump an additional 1 million barrels of crude daily, a move that should help contain prices.

At the time, Trump tweeted that he spoke with Saudi Arabia's King Salman to ramp up oil production to lower prices. But analysts criticised the US president's tweet, saying the crown prince had agreed to boost production four days earlier. 

Ardebili has frequently shot back at Trump's tweets and public comments about the oil cartel. Last month, in an interview with Reuters, he said that "you (Trump) cannot place sanctions on two OPEC founder members and still blame OPEC for oil price volatility".

"This is business, Mr. President - we thought you knew it," he added. 

In 2016, OPEC producers and non-OPEC countries struck a deal to trim production by 1.8 million barrels per day to reduce a global glut of oil.

The deal, which is due to run out at the end of 2018, has succeeded in boosting oil prices above $75 a barrel from below $30 a barrel in early 2016.

Before oil took a swift downturn in mid-2014, the price of Brent crude had in the years prior traded consistently above $100 per barrel. 

High oil prices make fracking more economically viable for the US, now the third largest producer of oil worldwide. However, high prices also hit businesses and consumers with more costs that are a drag on the US economy. 

In April, Iran's oil minister Bijan Zangeneh said that $60 a barrel is a good price for oil. Although Iran does not have spare capacity to pump more oil to offset lower oil prices, experts say renewed sanctions mean the country is more interested in tightening the screws on arch-rival Saudi Arabia that prefers higher prices. 

Follow us on Twitter: @The_NewArab