Exports of Iranian oil have improved since early November, President Hassan Rouhani said on Tuesday.
“The goal of the Americans was to block our oil exports. I want to say frankly to our people that our oil exports after (Nov. 4) have improved by degrees,” Rouhani said. “So the Americans have been unsuccessful with regard to the oil issue.”
“Iran’s oil sales are in good condition despite US efforts to choke off the country’s oil revenues,” he said at the end of a meeting of the heads of the three branches of government in Tehran.
He said Iranian oil sales have increased by 13 percent in the first eight months of the current Iranian fiscal year (March to November).
“Timely performance of the Central Bank of Iran and the business community have resulted in a tangible peace in the society even after the US sanctions hit the country’s oil and banking sectors,” Rouhani said.
According to the latest figures issued by the Joint Organizations Data Initiative (JODI), Iran’s oil exports in July reached 2.1 million barrels per day.
The United States imposed sanctions on Iran’s oil industry in early November and US officials have said they want to reduce Iran’s oil exports to zero.
Tensions have spiked between Iran and the United States after US President Donald Trump pulled out of an international agreement on Iran’s nuclear program in May.
He said the deal was flawed because it did not include curbs on Iran’s development of ballistic missiles or its regional activities.
The United States was also unsuccessful in preventing OPEC from cutting production, Rouhani said.
OPEC and its Russia-led allies agreed last week to slash oil production by more than the market had expected despite pressure from Trump to reduce the price of crude.
The deal exempted Tehran from the cut in a major blow to Washington’s crackdown campaign against Iranian oil sales.
“The Americans were unsuccessful in this OPEC meeting and the Islamic Republic of Iran, fortunately, had some good successes,” Rouhani said. “The process of selling our oil will continue in the same way as it did before this meeting.”
Support for Yemen talks
Rouhani expressed Iran’s support for intra-Yemeni negotiations, saying the invaders have come to the realization that making peace with the Yemeni nation is the only option available to them.
“Today, there are more signs than before of striding toward peace in Yemen,” he said.
Rouhani was commenting on the ongoing UN-mediated talks in Sweden between delegations from Yemen’s Houthis and the country’s former Saudi-backed regime.
The talks are meant to end nearly four years of a bloody Riyadh-led war, which was launched in early 2015 to reinstall Yemen’s former Saudi-friendly government.
“We have always supported intra-Yemeni talks,” said the Iranian president.
“The situation in Yemen has made those who sought to occupy the country see for themselves that making peace with Yemeni people is the only viable solution,” Rouhani said.
Reuters, Anadolu and Press TV contributed to this story.