Washington, D.C. – Today OPEC+ announced a production cut of 2 million barrels of oil per day, which is expected to worsen the high inflation harming U.S. consumers and businesses. The continued malign role of the Saudi-led cartel group, which includes Russia, underscores the urgent need to pass the No Oil Producing and Exporting Cartels Act (NOPEC), which is a awaiting a floor vote in both chambers of Congress.
“It is past time to take action against a price-fixing cartel that can drive up petroleum prices whenever they choose to do it,” said Byron Dorgan, a former U.S. Senator (D-ND) and senior advisor to SAFE, a non-partisan energy security organization. “NOPEC has strong bipartisan support and deserves an up-or-down vote.”
NOPEC would amend anti-trust law to enable the U.S. president to bring a lawsuit for anti-competitive behavior that would otherwise be illegal if practiced by private companies. The bipartisan legislation, co-sponsored in the House by representatives Steve Chabot (R-OH) and David Cicilline (D-RI), easily passed the Judiciary Committees of both chambers and is awaiting floor action.
“NOPEC would give President Biden the powerful tool he needs to hold Saudi Arabia and the cartel accountable for anti-competitive actions which have grievously impacted the American people and helped fund the Russian war machine,” said Robbie Diamond, Founder and CEO of SAFE.
After the Russian invasion of Ukraine led to spikes in global energy prices, OPEC had the opportunity to be a responsible market manager by raising production. Instead, the Saudi-led cartel held to prior agreement to cut production, which made an already serious global energy situation into an oil pricing crisis that will only get worse after today’s OPEC announcement.
NOPEC would amend the Sherman Act to allow the executive branch to prevent OPEC from using a sovereign immunity defense and the Act of State doctrine to evade U.S. antitrust law. Learn more about SAFE’s long-standing support of NOPEC and recent action here.
Contact: Bridget Dunn | 202.539.7885 | firstname.lastname@example.org
SAFE is a non-partisan, non-profit policy thought leadership organization dedicated to accelerating the real-world deployment of secure, resilient, and sustainable transportation and energy solutions of the United States and its partners and allies by shaping policies, perceptions, and practices that create opportunity for all.