Oil prices increased after reports of explosive-laden drone attacks on two pumping stations owned by Saudi Aramco.
Brent crude futures gained 56 cents to touch $70.79 a barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures jumped 31 cents to trade at $61.35 per barrel, reported Reuters.
Saudi Arabian Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih was quoted by the Saudi state news agency that Saudi Aramco has suspended supplies through the East-West pipeline until a complete assessment of the damage is received. Terming the incident as an “act of terrorism”, the minister added that the assault was aimed at disrupting global oil supplies.
The report of this incident comes a day after attacks on oil tankers in the Middle-East.
Saudi Arabia said that two of its tankers were attacked off the coast of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to disturb the global oil supplies. The UAE also said separately that four of its commercial vessels were attacked.
A US official alleged Iran’s involvement in the attacks. However, Iran denied responsibility in the incident, Reuters added.
Currently, the US has placed sanctions on Iranian crude exports, which has in turn tightened supplies into the market.
The market also remains tensed over a trade dispute between the US and China. Trade negotiations between the two countries jolted last week after the US President Donald Trump imposed additional tariffs on Chinese imports. Subsequently, China retaliated with higher tariffs on US commodities.
However, the two administrations have hinted at reconciliation, with Chinese State Councillor Wang Yi saying that both countries have “the ability and wisdom to resolve each other’s reasonable demands.” Trump also said that he expects to meet Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping at a G20 summit next month and have a “very fruitful meeting”.