1011 GMT October 23, 2018
Addressing a meeting of Iran’s Chamber of Commerce in Tehran on Sunday, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif commented on the future of Iran’s economy under mounting pressures from the US.
“Europeans guarantee that Iran will be able to sell its oil, although Americans are considering their own measures in this regard (limiting Iran’s oil sales),” he said.
Iran has gotten used to difficulties, Zarif said, adding that the country had been handling an Iraqi imposed war in the 1980s by selling its oil at a price of 8 dollars per barrel, while the current prices stand at 75 dollars.
There are no major European sanctions against Iran anymore, Zarif explained, saying the era of anti-Iran sanctions by Europe, which were sometimes harsher than the US ones, would not be repeated again.
Highlighting Tehran’s efforts to save the 2015 nuclear deal, Zarif said the US – the world’s top economy – has focused efforts to kill the deal and force Iran to withdraw from the agreement, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
However, he said that it doesn’t mean that we will stay in the deal under any circumstances, but we know the goal of the other party.
The whole international community, except for the US, Israel, and a few number of regional states which cannot live in peace even with their neighbors, have been supporting the JCPOA, Zarif said, adding that even Canada, which has cut diplomatic ties with Iran, wants the nuclear deal to be saved.
US President Donald Trump announced on May 8 that Washington was walking away from the nuclear agreement, which was reached between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council - the United States, Britain, France, Russia and China – plus Germany in 2015.
Trump also said he would reinstate US nuclear sanctions on Iran and impose "the highest level" of economic bans on the Islamic Republic.
Under the JCPOA, Iran undertook to put limits on its nuclear program in exchange for the removal of nuclear-related sanctions imposed against Tehran.
Since the US president pulled Washington out of the historic nuclear deal, European countries have been scrambling to ensure that Iran gets enough economic benefits to persuade it to stay in the deal. The remaining parties have vowed to stay in the accord.
However, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi said on Saturday that the nuclear accord is not in a normal state due to the US pullout from it.
Iran and the remaining signatories to the deal are seeking to keep it alive; however, Tehran would return to pre-JCPOA conditions if such efforts failed, he pointed out.
He noted that Iran had held intensive talks with the European signatories as well as China and Russia over the recent weeks at different levels.
"We have clearly announced that Iran has not made a decision yet to stay in the JCPOA or leave it, and our decision hinges on the opposite sides' will and capabilities to fulfill our demands," Araqchi added.
"We will make decisions based on national interests and will take the next steps on whether to remain in the JCPOA or not based on our national interests," he said.
The Iranian negotiator emphasized that the Islamic Republic was ready for "any condition or scenario."
Press TV and Tasnim News Agency contributed to this story.