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Rick Perry says it is too early to say if US oil reserves are needed



Texas Governor Rick Perry Campaign for Senate Republican Candidate and Speaker of North Carolina House Thom Tillis, October 24, 2014, in Smithfield, North Carolina

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Energy Secretary Rick Perry told CNBC Monday it's too early to say whether the United States will need to use its emergency reserves to offset the increase in oil prices as a result of drone strikes at Saudi Arabia's oil processing plant this weekend.

"I think we are still a little too early to comment … whether SPR will be needed before we get a proper grasp on how long this facility will be down," Perry told "Squawk on the Street."

The attack hit an oil processing plant at Abqaiq and nearby Khurais oil field, knocking out production at 5.7 million barrels a day, or half of Abqaiq's daily volume. In response, President Donald Trump authorized the release of oil from Strategic Petroleum Reserve, the country's emergency oil reserve, should crude prices be stabilized.

"I think the Saudis are already saying that they will be able to get back a third of this production before the close of business today," Perry said. "It's going to be a peak in this, but again, I want to be very clear that the market out there has a pretty significant amount of oil available," citing land reserves.

Brent crude futures, the international reference, rose as much as 1

9.5% to $ 71.95 per barrel on the open, the largest intraday jump on record.

"This undoubtedly disturbed and made people notice that you have got some bad actors in the world and you need to contact the security side," the secretary said.

Yemen's Houthi rebels claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it was one of their biggest attacks ever in the kingdom. However, the US has blamed Iran for the drone strikes at the facilities.

State Secretary Mike Pompeo said in a tweet Saturday that Iran has launched a "unique attack on the world's energy supply."

Said Perry: It is "time for a coalition of tame and thoughtful energy producing and energy-demanding countries to come together and stop Iran's malicious activity."


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