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According to Bloomberg, Saudi state media have confirmed a phone call between Trump and King Salman took place, but have not confirmed any agreement on production increases.

President Donald Trump says he has received assurances from King Salman of Saudi Arabia that the kingdom will increase oil production, "maybe up to 2,000,000 barrels", in response to turmoil in Iran and Venezuela.

"Saudi Arabia does not really like going beyond 11 million barrels a day and has no intention of expanding its current production capacity".

Trump's claim on Saturday comes after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), a grouping of oil producing states that includes Saudi Arabia, already agreed to ramp up production by a million barrels a day at a meeting earlier this month.

"During the call, the two leaders stressed the need to make efforts to maintain the stability of oil markets and the growth of the global economy", the statement said.

They also discussed "efforts by the oil producing countries to compensate for any potential shortage in supplies", it added. It did not elaborate.

The Trump administration is pushing other countries to cut all imports of Iranian oil, while it slapped further trade sanctions on Venezuela last month.

An agreement by an OPEC member nation to increase oil output at the request of a USA president would be a serious blow to that alliance of 15 oil-producing countries, which sets production quotas collectively, and has already shown fragility in recent days. That was after Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said the kingdom would honour the OPEC decision to stick to a one-million-barrel increase.

Crude prices have risen 12% in the last two weeks as the USA has signalled it will aggressively enforce sanctions aginst Iran, Opec's third-largest oil supplier.

Trump told King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud that the oil market could need more supply when the men spoke on Friday, the White House said.

Continuing increases came despite the decision last week by OPEC and its allies to increase production by as much as 1 million barrels per day. Trump ordered the re-imposition of USA sanctions against Iran that were suspended under the accord.

Saudi Arabia has the capacity to pump a maximum of 12.04 million bpd, according to the International Energy Agency.

"There is also some analysis from energy sector experts who say that Saudi Arabia could perhaps increase its daily output but it would only be for a very short time and the quality of the oil produced would be very low amd very hard to refine". So even though refiners welcomed the news on biofuel mandates, the spike in oil prices will probably have a bigger negative impact on earnings in the short term.

Mr Trump a year ago chose Saudi Arabia for his first foreign trip.

"The market will go up to $100 I am sure as Saudi Arabia said they will plan an increase for July".

This week, a US State Department official said Washington would work with countries on a case-by-case basis to try and stop them importing Iranian oil.

China is the largest importer of Iranian oil with 24 per cent, followed by India with 18 per cent. Turkey stood at nine per cent and Italy at seven per cent.

The State Department has said it expects the "vast majority" of countries will comply with the U.S. request.


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