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White House expects OPEC+ oil production hike after Middle East trip

An OPEC sign hangs outside the OPEC Secretariat on December 6, 2018 [Stefan Wermuth/Bloomberg via Getty Images]
An OPEC sign hangs outside the OPEC Secretariat on December 6, 2018 [Stefan Wermuth/Bloomberg via Getty Images]

The White House, on Monday, said it anticipates major oil producers in the OPEC+ alliance to increase crude production following President Joe Biden's trip to the Middle East, Reuters reports.

"We will measure success in the next couple of weeks," said White House spokesperson, Karine Jean-Pierre, at a press briefing. "We anticipate [it] to be an increase in production, but it's going to take the next couple of weeks, and that will be up to OPEC+."

Biden travelled to Saudi Arabia last week, where he met with the country's leadership and other members of the Gulf Cooperation Council in the oil-rich Middle East.

The Biden administration has come under pressure to cut gas prices and other consumer costs ahead of the 8 November mid-term elections, where his Democratic Party is seeking to retain control of Congress.

Oil prices  rocketed to their highest levels since 2008, climbing above $139 a barrel in March, after the United States and Europe imposed sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, which Moscow calls a "special military operation." Prices have slipped since then.

OPEC+, which includes both Saudi Arabia and Russia, meets next on 3 August.

READ: OPEC+ sticks to oil output policy, avoids debate on September plans

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