News ID: 233218
Published: 0237 GMT October 23, 2018

Iran: US sanctions cannot stop crude exports

Iran: US sanctions cannot stop crude exports

The United States cannot stop Iranian oil exports by imposing sanctions on Iran, Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said on Tuesday, warning that such restrictions would ensure that the market remains volatile.

“As long as America targets Iran, one of the biggest crude producers, with sanctions, volatility in the oil market will continue,” Zanganeh said, according to Tasnim News Agency.

“Iranian oil exports cannot be stopped,” he added.

In May, US President Donald Trump pulled out of the 2015 international nuclear deal with Iran and announced sanctions against OPEC’s third-largest producer. Washington is pushing allies to cut imports of Iranian oil to zero and will reimpose sanctions on Iranian oil and financial sectors in November.

It is also encouraging other oil producers such as Saudi Arabia, other OPEC members and Russia, to pump more oil to meet any shortfall.

Zanganeh reiterated his Monday remarks that Iranian oil output cannot be replaced by that of other oil-producing countries if Tehran is hit by US sanctions and advised Trump to forgo reimposing sanctions.

In an interview on national television, Zanganeh said, “We will spare no effort to resist the cruel US sanctions against the Islamic Republic.”

Saudi Arabia has said it has the capacity to increase output to 12 million barrels per day (bpd) from the current 10.7 million bpd.

However, its energy minister said on Monday that oil producers cannot make up for the shortfall in the global market when the US sanctions on Iranian oil exports come into force next month.

“If three million barrels per day disappears, we cannot cover this volume. So we have to use oil reserves,” Khalid al-Falih told Russia’s TASS news agency.

Falih said that with sanctions on Iran coming into full force in November, there was no guarantee that oil prices would not go higher.

“I cannot give you a guarantee, because I cannot predict what would happen to other suppliers,” Falih said, when asked whether the world can avoid oil hitting $100 per barrel again.

He said that if oil prices went up, it would slow the global economy and trigger a recession.

“We have sanctions on Iran, and nobody has a clue what Iranians’ exports will be. Secondly, there are potential declines in different countries like Libya, Nigeria, Mexico and Venezuela,” he said.

“We have relatively limited spare capacities and we are using a significant part of them,” Falih said.

Global supply next year could be helped by Brazil, Kazakhstan and the United States, he added.

“But if you have other countries [production] decline in addition to the full application of Iran sanctions, then we will be pulling all spare capacities,” Falih said.

Reuters contributed to this story.

 

 

 

 

 

 

   
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