India to continue buying Iranian crude despite U.S. sanctions threat

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REUTERS Andrew CullenMore

Reuters had reported on Friday that India would buy 9 million barrels of Iranian oil next month.

"It has been quite a tough process to negotiate", said Sanjay Sudhir, a joint secretary handling global cooperation in the Oil Ministry, in reference to efforts to diversify supplies and reduce Iranian imports. Buyers of the superlight crude are under more pressure than importers of "regular" crude since there are few alternate suppliers.

White House National Security Adviser John Bolton said on Thursday that the administration's goal was that there be no waivers and "exports of Iranian oil and gas and condensates drops to zero".

Pradhan said that while speaking to Saudi Arabia's energy minister Khalid A. Al-Falih two days ago he had reminded him of Opec's June decision and added that perhaps the increase in oil productions had not taken place.

S&P Global Platts estimated Iran's crude and condensate exports will drop to 1.1 million bpd this month, with the us sanctions removing as much as 1.7 million bpd from markets from November on. TankerTrackers.com reported in September that Iranian tankers were switching off their tracking devices after leaving their home ports, and later said that probably half of September's exports were shipped with the trackers off.

A U.S. government official said on Friday that the administration was considering waivers on Iran's oil sanctions. China is reportedly reducing its oil imports from Iran, though it's not likely to fully comply with the USA demands. "So we export as much as 2 barrels for any barrel that disappeared from Iran recently", he said.

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"Iran has been off-and-on taking rupee payments for oil it sells".

Washington's sanctions, targeting Iran's crude oil exports, are to come into force from November 4.

"What the Saudis had been supplying the market with, were not from Riyadh's spare capacity but from tapping its oil stocks", Zanganeh said, according to the website.

"Oil should not only be priced from a producers' point of view consumers interest should also be taken care of", he said.

Traders said ongoing concerns that the U.S.

Increasing tensions between the United States and Venezuela; the USA demanding an end to all imports of Iranian oil by early November; and the rupee's performance as Asia's worst performing currency of the year have compounded the situation and put India in a hard spot. He said any countries or companies that conduct transactions with Tehran were liable to face secondary sanctions.

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