During the 1970s, the government erected a wall to prevent exports — crude oil must be traded and refined domestically.
Who watches the wall?
The Bureau of Industry and Security at the Department of Commerce. They determine whether exports are "consistent with the national interest." Oh, and they define what "national interest" is, so there's no clear way to challenge this.
There must be a better way…
The regulations guiding this process must be updated to be consistent with the United States' twenty-first century economy. Did you know that the statute governing the export of crude oil has not been touched since 1979?
On top of that, our infrastructure to support domestic trade is overloaded. We'll soon be producing more crude oil than we can refine and consume.
Removing authority from the Bureau of Industry and Security would allow free trade of domestically produced crude oil. This will enable the United States to trade with more countries, opening up more economic opportunities at home.
And why not, really? We could see gains -- in jobs, wealth generation, industry, diplomacy -- by exporting. According to estimates, crude oil will yield massive benefits. In 2020 alone, we could see a GDP boost of $38 billion, an additional $14 billion in private sector investments, $13.5 billion more in federal revenue, and 300,000 more jobs. There's absolutely nothing to gain by keeping the status quo.