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Ros-Lehtinen Urges Saudi Arabia to Increase Oil Output

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Location: Washington, DC

Ros-Lehtinen also renews call for U.S. to produce energy-efficient technologies

U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) today expressed her "continuing outrage" at the Saudi government's lack of cooperation on energy issues and urged that Riyadh "follow through on its commitments" to increase oil output and help lower oil prices through higher production.

The world economy has been rocked by increasing oil prices, which have risen to above $140 a barrel, double the price levels of a year ago. The rise in prices has been felt across the globe, resulting in food and transportation costs that are potentially leaving many unable to feed themselves.

"While the streets of Riyadh are paved with petrodollar gold and oil profits help fund Islamist militants, ordinary Americans are finding it increasingly difficult to afford drive to work, visit family in another city, or put food on the table," said Ros-Lehtinen, Ranking Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Saudi ministers maintain that the rise in prices is "normal" and have argued that speculators and changes in currency values, not questionable Saudi oil policies, are responsible for the increasing oil prices. Saudi Arabia has pledged to increase its oil output by 200,000 barrels per day, though analysts believe that the Kingdom can do more to bring down the price of oil.

"Recent promises by the Saudi government to increase production not only falls far below world needs, but is also far below its capabilities. Saudi Arabia should quit these callous practices and adhere to its leading role in the world market," said Ros-Lehtinen.

Ros-Lehtinen also renewed her call for the United States to capitalize on our "tremendous innovative capabilities to produce more energy-efficient technologies," including expanded investment in alternative energy sources such as wind, solar, biomass, and hydrogen fuel cell power.


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