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Oil prices rise above $110 a barrel as EU weighs potential ban on Russian oil

Oil prices rise above $110 a barrel as EU weighs potential ban on Russian oil
March 22
10:22 2022

Oil prices, on Tuesday, climbed higher amid talks by some European Union members to ban Russian oil and attacks on Saudi Arabia’s oil facilities.

At 9.00 GMT+1, Brent crude futures gained 1.5 percent, to $117.3 a barrel, while West Texas Intermediate futures witnessed a corresponding of over 1 percent, trading at $113.3 a barrel.

European Union foreign ministers had disagreed over joining the US in sanctioning Russian oil, with Germany saying the bloc was too dependent on Russia’s fossil fuels. 

“It seems energy traders are growing more confident that supply shortages are just around the corner,” Edward Moya, an analyst at OANDA told Reuters.

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Moya added that prices are rallying in response to geopolitical concerns both in Ukraine and over attacks at Saudi Aramco sites.

“Right now it seems the risks are growing and that could push crude prices higher,” the analyst said. 

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia had warned it would not be responsible for disruptions to global supply following recent attacks on its facilities by Yemen’s Houthi movement.

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The comments came as the group fired missiles and drones at facilities of the Saudi state oil firm over the weekend, leading to a temporary drop in its refinery output.

In Nigeria, persistent supply disruptions caused by technical challenges, theft, and pipeline sabotage continue to pose a serious threat to Nigeria’s oil output.

Austin Avuru, former chief executive officer of Seplat Energy Plc, had said 80 percent of Nigeria’s oil production is lost to oil theft.

Oil production had dropped in February to an average of 1.25 million barrels per day (bpd) from 1.39 million the previous month.

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