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Official Says Iran's Main Oil Customers Not Buying 'Even One Additional Barrel'

Iran’s deputy oil minister for trade and international affairs Amir-Hossein Zamaninia, undated.

Iranian oil minister’s deputy for international trade says the eight countries which have received U.S. sanctions' waivers to continue buying Iranian oil are not willing to buy even one additional barrel.

Amir-Hossein Zamaninia, in an interview with the oil ministry’s news agency on Saturday, in reference to main buyers of Iranian oil; such as South Korea , China, India and Japan, said “ Because of U.S. pressures and financial clout these countries are not willing to buy even one additional barrel of oil beyond their waiver”.

After the United States withdrew from the 2015 nuclear agreement and reimposed sanctions, it agreed to give temporary waivers to friendly countries to import Iranian oil, partly because Washington was concerned about a supply crunch on world oil markets and did not want the price to rise.

But the U.S. has said it is determined to bring Iran’s oil exports to zero and has told countries that have waivers to gradually shift their purchases away from Iran.

However, Zamaninia has reiterated that Iran continuously seeks new buyers for its oil, claiming that Iran now has more customers.

This claim cannot be verified, as by all indicators there is plenty of oil on the market and the price has significantly declined since last October.

Already, as of November 2018, Iran had lost at least one million barrels of exports per day from a high of 2.7 million barrels before the sanctions. This has led to serious revenue shortage for the government.