U.S. President Donald Trump and Iran exchanged sharp words over oil prices on Wednesday, with Trump blaming OPEC for high oil prices and Tehran accusing him of stoking volatility after he withdrew last month from a global nuclear arms deal with Iran.
Trump sparked the latest back-and-forth when he renewed his attack on OPEC in a tweet that said oil prices are too high and that the cartel was “at it again.”
Oil prices have risen by around 60 percent over the last year after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and some non-OPEC producers including Russia started reducing supplies in 2017. The cartel meets June 22-23 in Vienna, and producers are seen as likely to raise production, perhaps before the limits are due to sunset at year-end.
Iran’s OPEC governor, Hossein Kazempour Ardebili, fired back quickly at Trump’s words. “You cannot place sanctions on two OPEC founder members and still blame OPEC for oil price volatility,” he said in a statement to Reuters, referring to itself and Venezuela.