Trump criticizes OPEC for “artificially high” oil prices

US President Donald Trump criticized the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) on Friday, stating that oil prices are “artificially very high”.

Trump said in a tweet that this was “no good” and “would not be accepted”.

His comments come a day after oil reached its highest levels in years. Brent crude rose to above $74 earlier this week to its highest level since November 2014 while WTI rose to a three-year high above $69.

Mr Trump said: “Looks like OPEC is at it again. With record amounts of Oil all over the place, including the fully loaded ships at sea, Oil prices are artificially Very High! No good and will not be accepted!”

Trump seems to be referring to OPEC’s production level agreement that went into effect last year.

OPEC and other oil producing nations agreed to reduce production as part of an effort to push up oil prices. The production curbs began at the start of 2017 and are set to expire at the end of this year.

When asked about Trump’s tweet, Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih told CNBC, “Markets should determine price.”

According to Reuters, Goldman Sachs said in a note published late on Thursday:

“Global oil demand data so far in 2018 has come in line with our optimistic expectations, with Q1 2018 likely to post the strongest year-on-year growth since Q4 2010 at 2.55 million barrels per day,”