WASHINGTON, July 29 The U.S. Commerce
Department's decision to give two companies permission last
month to export lightly processed crude oil was not coordinated
with the White House, a top adviser to President Barack Obama
"Those were decisions made at the Commerce Department, and
were not coordinated with the White House, to my knowledge,"
said John Podesta, counselor to the president.
"The Commerce licenses were in the regular order of applying
their current standards to two license applications," Podesta
said, replying to a question on Monday on a call about unrelated
White House climate initiatives.
Podesta, who oversees climate change and energy policy,
emphasized that the Obama administration has not changed its
policy on crude oil exports.
But the administration is continuing to examine the U.S. oil
boom and refining capacity, he said.
"It's something that's under review through our economic
processes here at the White House," he said.
The United States has banned exports of crude oil for
decades, but soaring domestic production has spurred calls to
overhaul the regulations and allow for more exports.
Some industry players saw an opening last month when Pioneer
Natural Resources Ltd and Enterprise Product Partners
LP said they had received private rulings to export
condensate, a light petroleum.
Enterprise has already arranged for sales of condensate to
South Korea and Japan, sources told Reuters earlier in July.
Other companies seeking similar rulings have been told their
requests have been put on hold, Reuters reported late on Monday.
(Reporting by Roberta Rampton; Editing by Tom Hogue)