Tuesday, 25 September, 2018

Trump blasts OPEC, warns European companies against business with Iran

| 03 July, 2018, 02:12

Iran will allow private companies to export crude oil, part of a strategy to counter U.S. sanctions, and is urging fellow OPEC members, including regional rival Saudi Arabia, not to break output agreements, state media and officials said on Sunday.

The Trump administration is claiming some early success in its quest to cripple Iran with sanctions in order to drag it back to negotiations and change its behavior, even as it softens its demand on USA allies to reduce their Iranian oil imports to zero.

"Our goal is to increase pressure on the Iranian regime by reducing to zero its revenue on crude oil sales", Hook said. -European relations, Hook and teams from the State Department and Treasury Department have been traveling to European and East Asian countries to shore up support for this new pressure campaign and try to persuade countries to reduce oil imports.

Oil prices had risen on Friday on worries that U.S. sanctions against Iran would take away significant volumes of crude oil from world markets while oil demand worldwide increases.

Trump said on Fox News' "Sunday Morning Futures" that European companies will face consequences as a result of the USA withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal.

The leader of Saudi Arabia promised U.S. President Donald Trump that he can raise oil production if needed and the country has 2 million barrels per day of spare capacity, the White House said on Saturday.


"We're not granting waivers", the official said.

Last week, a senior US State Department official described tightening the noose on Tehran as "one of our top national security priorities". The White House has said the US will put those sanctions back into place.

Rising gasoline prices could create a political headache for Trump ahead of the November elections by offsetting Republican claims that his tax cuts and rollbacks of federal regulations have helped boost the economy.

"They're begging the Saudis to raise their output so that if Iran's quota decreases nothing will happen to the markets", said Jahangiri.

Hook's comments follow a turbulent week in the oil market that started last Tuesday when another State Department official called on buyers to stop importing Iranian crude by November 4.

Without naming Saudi Arabia, Zangeneh wrote "any increase" in production by any member state "beyond commitments stipulated in OPEC's decisions. would constitute (a) breach of the agreement".

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