U.S. President Joe Biden has called out Russia and OPEC countries for causing U.S. energy prices to rise, even as he implements policies to curtail domestic oil and natural gas production.
“If you take a look at, you know, gas prices and you take a look at oil prices, that is a consequence of, thus far, the refusal of Russia or the OPEC nations to pump more oil,” Biden told reporters on Tuesday at the COP26 climate summit in Scotland. “We’ll see what happens on that score sooner than later,” he added.
Prices for the leading US crude benchmark, West Texas Intermediate (WTI), have surged to around $84 per barrel from $48 per barrel since the beginning of 2021, contributing to the nation’s highest inflation rate in 13 years. Gasoline prices are at a seven-year high.
While the president pointed the finger at Russia and OPEC for failing to help bring down oil prices, he said that inflation more broadly is being spurred by the Covid-19 pandemic’s impact on supply chains.