The US, China, Japan, South Korea and the UK announce oil release

25 Nov 2021

The United States has decided to release 50 mbl of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, in an attempt to lower domestic oil prices, which have reached 7-year highs; 32 mbl will be exchanged over the next several months, releasing oil that will eventually return to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in the years ahead, while 18 mbl will be an acceleration into the next several months of a sale of oil that Congress had previously authorised.

In order to have a larger impact on global oil prices, the US oil release will be coordinated with China, India, South Korea, Japan and the United Kingdom. India plans to release 5 mbl, while the United Kingdom will allow the voluntary release of 1.5 mbl from privately-held reserves. Japan will release "a few hundred thousand kilolitres" of oil from its national reserves (estimated at 490 mbl), but the timing of the sale remains undecided. China and South Korea have also agreed to join the coordinated move, though without specifying how much oil would be released or when.

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