Administrator Adam Sieminski said exporting crude would come with a number of tradeoffs, just as policy makers have learned during the debate over whether to allow LNG exports. But he said the US should be prepared to have the same debate about the country's burgeoning oil output. "Generally speaking, most people think trade is good," he told reporters after speaking at the Bipartisan Policy Center conference in Washington. "And manufacturing adds jobs. Refining is just a manufacturing process that turns crude oil into products that people can use.
"We could import oil, refine it and export it as products. And if the occasion came up where some of the oil we had was more useful for refining or export, I'm not sure that we should just automatically assume that that would be bad. It might actually be a way to grow the economy, create jobs and ultimately help reduce prices for oil and oil products."
Sieminski said crude exports should not be "rejected outright without going through a really good, thorough analysis of what the pros and cons are."