Bloomberg: Republicans are seeking to prevent China from buying US oil reserves

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Bloomberg revealed that there is a US intention to prevent China from purchasing oil from emergency stocks, according to a clause included in a draft law related to financing the US government that was revealed last Sunday.

A group of US opponents is seeking to prevent the sale of oil from the strategic reserve to China, after selling a large amount of oil in 2022, amounting to nearly one million barrels, to “Unipec America Inc,” a Houston-based subsidiary of “Unipec America Inc.” Sinopec is majority owned by the Chinese government.

The Department of Energy is required by law to auction off oil from the Strategic Oil Reserve to the highest bidder, regardless of the nationality of the buyer, the White House administration said.

The oil was sold by the administration of former President Donald Trump to PetroChina International, a subsidiary of the Chinese state oil company PetroChina Co. In 2017.

The strategic petroleum reserve, which was stored in the wake of the Arab oil embargo in the 1973, currently stands at 360 million barrels, which is close to its lowest level in 40 years, after the administration of President Joe Biden made a historic release of 180 million barrels in 2022 to curb rising oil prices, after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The US administration has been slowly trying to refill it, as it has purchased about 23 million barrels since last year.

The narrative used in the government funding legislation is similar to a law passed by the Republican-controlled House of Representatives last year banning the sale of strategic petroleum reserves to China, which never passed the Senate.

Meanwhile, the Congress aims to pass the bill before the expected partial closure deadline on Friday.

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