All countries to which the US has granted temporary exemptions to continue buying Iranian oil prefer to strictly adhere to US sanctions but Tehran has identified other potential customers, said Saturday a senior Iranian official.
After denouncing the Iran nuclear deal signed in 2015, Washington reinstated sanctions against the oil sector of the Islamic Republic at the end of last year while allowing eight countries to continue buying crude for six months.
“China, India, Japan, South Korea and other countries that have obtained exemptions from America to import Iranian oil do not want to buy even a barrel to Iran” Amir Hossein Zamaninia, deputy minister of oil responsible for international and commercial affairs, was quoted by the ministry’s news agency Shana as saying.
Other exemptions were granted to Italy, Greece, Turkey and Taiwan.
“Despite US pressure, the number of potential buyers of Iranian crude has increased significantly due to a competitive market, greed and profit-seeking,” added Amir Hossein Zamaninia.
US President Donald Trump promised to completely dry Iranian oil exports to reduce the regional influence of the Islamic Republic.
Tehran has been discussing for months with the European Union, which defends the nuclear deal, with a view to setting up a barter mechanism to circumvent the sanctions of the United States.
This “special vehicle” (SPV) would be “useful but would not solve all the problems because the influence of the United States will affect the decisions of the Europeans,” said the Iranian official.