News

France Considering Release of Oil Reserves

Gasoline priced at $5.89 for regular is advertised at a U.S. Shell station, Monday, Feb. 27, 2012, in Orlando, Florida. Oil prices are falling as investors lock in profits after a seven-day surge.
Gasoline priced at $5.89 for regular is advertised at a U.S. Shell station, Monday, Feb. 27, 2012, in Orlando, Florida. Oil prices are falling as investors lock in profits after a seven-day surge.

France says it is ready to release some of its strategic oil reserves, possibly in a joint effort with the United States and Britain to curb the increase in crude oil prices and cut the cost of gasoline that motorists pay.

French Energy Minister Eric Besson said Wednesday that the U.S. had asked it to join in releasing some of its emergency stock of oil. He said France is discussing the plan with the International Energy Agency, the 28-nation coalition of industrialized nations that coordinates release of oil reserves. The U.S. said no decision has been made on whether to release any of the oil it controls.

Normally, oil reserves are only released when there is a severe oil supply disruption, which is not the case at the moment. But Western leaders say they are concerned that the increase in oil prices over the last several months could slow the global economic recovery.

The price of oil - which largely controls the cost of gasoline - has partly risen because of tensions over what Western powers say is the development of nuclear weaponry by oil-producing Iran. Emerging global economies are also using more oil, further boosting the price.

Consumer complaints about increased gasoline costs are weighing heavily on U.S. President Barack Obama and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, both of whom face tough re-election contests in the coming months. In the U.S., the cost of gasoline now averages more than $1 a liter. That price is still quite low by some international comparisons, but the highest ever in the U.S. for this time of year.

World oil prices fell Wednesday after France announced its intention to tap its strategic reserves and a U.S. report showed that its oil inventories are growing. The price for light sweet crude oil fell two percent on the New York market to about $105 a barrel.

But analysts say the current price is about $15 a barrel higher than it might be without the confrontation between West and Iran, which could lead to a disruption in Iran's oil exports. Some suggest that release of the emergency reserves could cut the price of oil to about $100 a barrel.

Some information for this report provided by AFP.

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Communityi
X
Sharon Behn
August 03, 2015 2:23 PM
A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Community

A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Bangkok Warned It Soon Could Be Submerged

Italy's Venice and America's New Orleans are not the only cities gradually submerging. The nearly ten million residents of the Bangkok urban area now must confront warnings the city could become uninhabitable in a few decades. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from the Thai capital.
Video

Video Inclusive Gym Gets People With Disabilities in Fitness Spirit

Individuals with special needs are 58 percent more likely to be obese than the general population. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, they also have an increased likelihood of anxiety, depression and social isolation. But a sports club outside Washington wants to make a difference in these people's lives. With Carol Pearson narrating, VOA's June Soh reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Special Olympics Show Competitors' Skill, Determination

Special Olympics competitions will wrap up Saturday in Los Angeles, and the closing ceremony for athletes with intellectual disabilities will be held Sunday night. In a week of competition, athletes have shown what they can do through skill and determination. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Shooter’s Grill: Serving Food with a Touch of the Second Amendment

Shooter's Grill, a restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, attracts visitors from all over the world as well as local patrons. The reason? Waitresses openly carry loaded firearms as they serve food, and customers are welcome to carry them, too. VOA's Enming Liu and Lin Yang paid a visit to Shooter's Grill, and heard different opinions about this unique establishment.
Video

Video Despite Controversy, Business Owner Continues Sale of Confederate Flags

At Cooter’s, a store in rural Sperryville, Virginia, about 120 kilometers west of Washington, D.C., Confederate flags are flying off the shelves. The red, white and blue battle flag, with 13 white stars representing the Confederate states, was carried by southern forces during the U.S. Civil War in the 1860s. The South had seceded from the Union over several key issues of disagreement, including slavery. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs