Engaged With The US On Iran Oil Issue, Says Foreign Ministry

Engaged With The US On Iran Oil Issue, Says Foreign Ministry

Engaged With The US On Iran Oil Issue, Says Foreign Ministry

The U.S. government has agreed to let eight countries, including close allies South Korea and Japan, as well as India, keep buying Iranian oil after it reimposes sanctions on Tehran from next week, Bloomberg reported on Friday, citing a U.S. official.

Countries seeking waivers - in a process similar to that under former President Barack Obama - are expected to agree to substantially reduce their Iranian oil imports.

Under the law, the US president must periodically issue a "determination" on whether there is sufficient supply in the market from non-Iranian sources for countries to significantly cut their Iranian purchases.

Questioned on the possibility of sanctions or waiver, U.S. ambassador to India, Ken Juster sidestepped questions from journalists on the margins of a conference on connectivity, refusing to answer in advance of official pronouncement from Washington.

Benchmark crude oil was down 20 cents a barrel at $72.69 by 0900 GMT.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were down 33 cents, or 0.5%, at $63.36 a barrel. Iran could mix its oil with crude from neighboring Iraq, sell on the black market or try a barter system supported by the Europeans. The source said India would soon sign an initial agreement with Iran to start paying for oil in Indian rupees through UCO bank.

State-run Indian refiner Hindustan Petroleum said it may resume buying Iranian oil if India secures a waiver from USA sanctions, its chairman MK Surana said on Thursday (November 1).

Pompeo said eight nations, which other officials identified as USA allies such as Italy, India, Japan and South Korea, will receive temporary waivers allowing them to continue to import Iranian petroleum products for a limited period as long as they end such imports entirely. Talk is good by the way, Kudlow said.

While US President Donald Trump and senior figures in Congress have pushed for harsher anti-Iranian sanctions, the State and Treasury Departments reportedly caved to pressure from European allies and Iran.

The U.S. move infuriated Iran and angered the other countries that negotiated the nuclear deal and still say it's the best chance to constrain the Islamic Republic's nuclear ambitions.

Iran says the United States is seeking to wage an extensive "psychological war" against Tehran by imposing a fresh round of sanctions, stressing that the Islamic Republic has no concerns over such USA bids. The report states that an estimated reduction of 1.1 million barrels a month has been managed by the pressure campaign, according to USA estimates. But we are prepared to work with countries that are reducing their imports on a case-by-case basis. To gain the waiver, it likely agreed to a larger cut of imports from previous levels.

"Maximum pressure means maximum pressure", he said.

A list of all countries getting waivers was expected to be released officially on Monday, Bloomberg said.

Despite the surge in output, concerns lingered as Washington is set to impose its sanctions against Iran's petroleum exports from next week. The administration sees those accounts as an important way of limiting Iranian revenue and further constraining its economy. "There is much more that it's going to need to do", he said. "The message they're sending is don't screw around with these escrow accounts and try to get cute".

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