Iran's Chabahar Port Scores an India- and Afghanistan-Inspired Sanctions Exemption

Crude Oil

Crude Oil

Iran, Opec's third largest crude producer, exported in April a record high of 2.8 million bpd of oil, a figure that plummeted to 1.6 million bpd in October, said Iman Nasseri, managing director for the Middle East at London-based consultancy FGE. Output from these three countries in October exceeded 33 million barrels per day (bpd) for the first time, meaning they alone meet more than a third of the world's nearly 100 million bpd of crude oil consumption.

Crude oil prices fell Tuesday, briefly entering bear market territory, after the USA said it will allow some of Iran's biggest customers to continue importing the Opec member's crude without violating reinstated US sanctions.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures were at $61.63 per barrel at 0125 GMT, down 4 cents from their last settlement.

This group of eight buyers imported over 80 percent of Iran's oil exports past year.

The JTC prepares regular reports on the oil market which inform the group's decisions.

WTI and not least Brent crude oil both recovered on the back of this comment and in our opinion it confirms our view that Brent crude may stabilise following the recent weakness and stay within a $70 to $80 range for the foreseeable future.

Still, while the United States clampdown will probably trigger recession in Iran next year, economic meltdown should be avoided, with a reduced but still significant volume of oil exports continuing, a Fitch solutions analyst said. The other countries allowed to continue importing Iranian crude at present are Greece, Italy, South Korea, Taiwan and Turkey.

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Russian Federation pumps an average of 10.8million bpd and Saudi Arabia, about 10.5million bpd.

The sanctions exception granted to the Chabahar project aims to further USA ties with Afghanistan and India "as we execute a policy of maximum pressure to change the Iranian regime's destabilizing policies in the region and beyond", the State Department spokesman said.

The US State Department has warned nations, allowing Iran's shipping vessels into their territorial waters and ports, of potential risks connected to insurance liabilities amid the recently introduced sanctions.

As a result of pre-sanctions pressure by Washington, Iran's oil exports in November may not exceed 1 million to 1.5 million bpd, according to industry estimates.

Trump said on Monday he wants to impose sanctions on Iran's oil gradually, citing concerns about shocking markets and causing global price spikes.

"Countries, ports, and canal operators, and private firms should know they will be likely responsible for the cost of an accident involving a self-insured Iranian tanker", he added. -China trade war will damp fuel demand as supply grows from multiple directions. The granting of the waivers and pledges from Saudi Arabia to fill any supply gaps has since led oil prices to hover $75 a barrel.

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