Saudi Arabia calls for oil output cuts

Speaking at a conference in Abu Dhabi, Saudi energy minister Khalid Al Falih said "there will need to be a reduction of supply from October levels, approaching 1 million barrels." CNN's John Defterios reports.

Posted: Nov 12, 2018 8:04 PM
Updated: Nov 12, 2018 8:04 PM

The killing of Saudi critic Jamal Khashoggi confirms what we already know: The US alliance with Saudi Arabia is not built on shared values. This is a relationship sustained by mutual interests, namely oil for security. From Wahhabism to hate speech to incitement and women's rights, the US has compromised on its values repeatedly.

Whatever steps Congress and the Trump administration take to punish the kingdom, there is a line that cannot be crossed. Elements of the US-Saudi strategic partnership remain vital to US interests — especially Riyadh's role as the world's swing oil producer. The kingdom's massive oil wealth keeps global oil markets balanced and prices relatively low.

If America really wants to start distancing itself from its unhappy marriage with Saudi Arabia, it needs a plan. The Saudis recently unveiled their plan to become less dependent on oil. It's called Vision 2030. Washington needs a Vision 2030, too.

Even if Saudi Arabia was not an imperfect or troubling ally, the US needs this vision. The US must adopt a national strategy for a post-oil future. Without energy independence, or at least a serious plan for a post-oil future in mind, Washington will find itself stuck in the past. A national strategy for a post-oil future would boost the US's geopolitical flexibility and leverage around the world, ending its need to rely on less-than-ideal partners. Such a blueprint would enable the US to pursue both interests and values equally, finally breaking Washington's long-standing dilemma with the Saudis and other allies in the Middle East.

On a policy level, an American Vision 2030 could include providing subsidies or indexing tax credits for electric cars that would incentivize increased ownership of electric vehicles. It could include government funding to boost R&D efforts at companies like Tesla or Lucid Motors to help them develop more cost-effective models. It could include a spending package to build a large, well-connected charging infrastructure network.

America's vision for energy independence could also include policies to promote a competitive market for alternative transportation fuels, breaking the gasoline monopoly. A healthy alternative fuel market would free the US from its overwhelming dependence on Saudi Arabia to stabilize oil markets. And alternative fuels like ethanol can be sourced domestically, meaning the US need not rely on foreign actors to balance fuel prices.

A US Vision 2030 might ironically even propel Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030. A competitive fuel marketplace would likely lower oil prices and thus decrease Saudi government revenue, further underscoring the imperative of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's plan to diversify the Saudi economy away from oil as quickly as possible. An added bonus: Decreasing Saudi oil rents will also likely reduce the pot of money available for those in the kingdom still funding extremist ideologies at home and abroad.

The Khashoggi affair is doubtless the worst crisis between the US and Saudi Arabia in recent memory. We've been through other crises in the past, including the attacks of 9/11 and the Arab oil embargo after the 1973 Yom Kippur War. After each crisis, we went back to business as usual. But perhaps this time is different.

Perhaps this is a wakeup call. The US has for too long sacrificed values for interests with many Middle Eastern partners. An energy-independent America could act from a position of values with all of our Middle Eastern partners, representing a sea change in the US's regional relationships. Washington's leverage would increase vastly, finally enabling the US to vocally demand change that the Middle East so badly needs. This is the change that Jamal Khashoggi called for — and an outcome Khashoggi would embrace.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 604758

Reported Deaths: 7648
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1250271781
Ramsey52525898
Dakota46864471
Anoka42797458
Washington27437291
Stearns22563225
St. Louis18145314
Scott17554138
Wright16385149
Olmsted13406102
Sherburne1202895
Carver1067648
Clay826592
Rice8207110
Blue Earth762944
Crow Wing681995
Kandiyohi668485
Chisago620752
Otter Tail586484
Benton583098
Goodhue484074
Douglas475881
Mower470533
Winona461452
Itasca460263
Isanti440364
McLeod431261
Morrison424862
Beltrami408062
Nobles407850
Steele397817
Polk389072
Becker386755
Lyon363953
Carlton353056
Freeborn347133
Pine334923
Nicollet331345
Mille Lacs311854
Brown308040
Le Sueur297426
Cass286532
Todd285733
Meeker263643
Waseca238023
Martin235333
Roseau211221
Wabasha20793
Hubbard196641
Dodge18783
Renville182846
Redwood176639
Houston174616
Cottonwood167124
Wadena163423
Fillmore157610
Faribault155319
Chippewa153938
Pennington153820
Kanabec146828
Sibley146710
Aitkin138937
Watonwan13579
Rock128719
Jackson122812
Pipestone116726
Yellow Medicine115020
Pope11306
Murray107110
Swift106918
Koochiching95618
Stevens92511
Clearwater89016
Marshall88817
Lake83220
Wilkin83213
Lac qui Parle75622
Big Stone6044
Grant5948
Lincoln5853
Mahnomen5669
Norman5479
Kittson49022
Unassigned47793
Red Lake4017
Traverse3775
Lake of the Woods3453
Cook1720

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 371318

Reported Deaths: 6059
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk58281641
Linn21248339
Scott20311248
Black Hawk16200312
Woodbury15240230
Johnson1462685
Dubuque13517211
Dallas1129399
Pottawattamie11233174
Story1071948
Warren584091
Clinton561593
Cerro Gordo554297
Sioux517774
Webster516594
Muscatine4883106
Marshall488076
Des Moines468172
Wapello4340122
Buena Vista427140
Jasper421273
Plymouth403281
Lee382557
Marion366176
Jones301157
Henry294937
Bremer288861
Carroll287052
Boone268534
Crawford268440
Benton260455
Washington257251
Dickinson249344
Mahaska232651
Jackson225242
Clay216727
Kossuth216166
Tama212371
Delaware211143
Winneshiek198935
Page194522
Buchanan194233
Cedar192323
Hardin187444
Fayette187143
Wright186140
Hamilton182051
Harrison180073
Clayton171257
Butler166535
Madison164619
Mills163924
Floyd163542
Cherokee159438
Lyon159241
Poweshiek157136
Allamakee152952
Hancock150334
Iowa149924
Winnebago144531
Cass139255
Calhoun138813
Grundy137533
Emmet135741
Jefferson133435
Shelby131837
Sac130920
Union130135
Louisa129649
Appanoose129049
Mitchell126743
Chickasaw124917
Franklin123523
Guthrie123332
Humboldt119626
Palo Alto113523
Howard105122
Montgomery103638
Clarke101124
Keokuk97032
Monroe96431
Unassigned9570
Ida91635
Adair87532
Pocahontas85822
Davis85325
Monona83631
Osceola78917
Greene78111
Lucas77923
Worth7628
Taylor66812
Fremont6279
Decatur6169
Ringgold56424
Van Buren56418
Wayne54423
Audubon53411
Adams3454
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