Iran Vows to Keep Exporting Oil and Gas
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org - Home - Stephen Lendman)
The Trump regime's aim to reduce Iranian oil exports to zero is doomed to fail, Iran and its key allies to circumvent illegal US sanctions on the country.
Russia vowed to increase cooperation with Iran. Tehran's envoy to Russia Mehdi Sanaei earlier said Russo/Islamic Republic ties are deepening in areas of mutual interest — notably in the wake of the Trump regime's pullout from the JCPOA nuclear deal, along with all-out war by other means on the country.
Russia called bilateral political, economic, and security relations with Iran more solid than ever in the modern era.
Former and current Iranian Energy Ministers Reza Ardekanian and Bijan Namdar Zangeneh respectively said working closely with their Russian counterpart Alexander Novak on oil and gas issues continues and is strengthening.
Zangeneh said Iran will bring 18 new petrochemical plants online in the next two years, raising the country's export capacity to 50 million tons, able to generate $36 billion in annual revenue.
National Iranian Gas Company CEO Hassan Montazer Torbati said the Islamic Republic expanded its gas export capability to significantly increase exports to Iraq, Turkey, and other countries.
Zangeneh stressed that Tehran is focusing heavily on increasing its South Pars gas production, the world's largest field, by 60 million cubic meters by next winter.
It accounts for nearly half of Iranian gas exports. Iraq relies on Iranian gas for nearly half its electricity generation needs.
In 2017, China and Iran agreed on jointly boosting production. A Tabriz/Ankara pipeline accounts for 11 billion cubic meters of Iranian gas exports to Turkey.
President Erdogan vowed to continue buying Iranian oil and gas despite US sanctions. So does China. Iran and Russia are working cooperatively to circumvent Trump regime sanctions.
India relies heavily on Iranian oil. New Delhi won't likely stop buying it. In late April, China's Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said Beijing opposes" unilateral US sanctions, adding:
"We urge the US to conscientiously respect China's interests and concerns and not to take mistaken actions that would hurt China's interests."
"Meanwhile China will continue to maintain the legitimate interests of our companies…(N)ormal energy cooperation" with Iran is legal and will continue.
On Thursday, OPEC secretary-general Mohammed Barkindo said it's "impossible" to exclude Iranian oil from the global market, adding he believes Tehran will successfully overcome Trump regime actions against its legal rights.
Iranian Ayatollah Seyyed Ahmad Khatami said "US officials should know that Iran will produce oil as much as it wants," promising to foil Trump regime sanctions.
Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Iran wants peace, not war with the US or any other country, adding "accidents" can happen igniting conflict over unacceptable US actions against the Islamic Republic, part of its regime change strategy.
Last fall, Russia indicated its willingness to refine Iranian crude for export. At the time, FGE Energy's Middle East managing director Iman Nasseri said Iran can work with "private middle-m(en) to…find buyers and arrange for logistics that could possibly be invisible to the monitoring systems" – payment for deliveries to be mostly or entirely in non-dollar currencies.
Putin, Turkey's Erdogan, and Iranian President Rouhani reportedly agreed to work cooperatively on circumventing US sanctions.
Brussels agreed to keep buying Iranian oil. When it comes to acting independently from Washington, most often it says one thing and does another, adhering to US policies even when harming the interests of EU nations.
Iran circumvented US sanctions for decades. Some oil sales no doubt will be lost. Blocking them entirely won't happen.
On Thursday, Iran denounced Saudi Arabia and the UAE's announced intention to increase in production at the expense of Islamic Republic sales, oil minister Barkindo saying:
"Iran is part of OPEC due to its interests, and if members of the organization seek to threaten it, (their actions won't go) unanswered," warning it could lead to OPEC's collapse, adding:
The Trump regime aims "to cut Iran's oil exports to zero, but this is a pious hope. Any independent market expert knows that a surplus of capacities declared by certain countries is exaggeration and overstatement."
The Saudis and UAE aren't able to increase production enough to equal Iranian exports. Its military commander General Abdolrahim Mousavi ordered the country's forces to "prepare" for a possible attack by a hostile power, referring to the US.
Imam Ali Khamenei warned that "the enemy's war posture" aims to eliminate Islamic Republic rule, adding "(t)oday the enemy is attacking us on all areas. They devise plans to strike Iran on economy, intelligence infiltration & cyberspace."
Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif earlier said the Trump regime believes "that imposing illegal, draconian sanctions on Iran will bring about such pain to our nation that it will force us to submit to its will no matter how absurd, unlawful or fundamentally flawed its demands are," adding:
"(W)e and our partners across the globe will ensure that our people are least affected by this indiscriminate assault in the economic warfare that directly targets the Iranian people."
Working cooperatively with allied countries, Iran believes it will successfully overcome illegal Trump regime actions against its sovereign rights.
In late April, Russia's Foreign Ministry said unacceptable US actions toward Iran will harm its international standing, saying:
"The US has obviously made a mistake in choosing tools, if it has decided to make Tehran an easy negotiator ready for any deals on American terms through suppressing it economically, dealing a blow to living conditions of ordinary Iranians," adding:
"This policy won't add international weight to Americans. The rest of the world sees perfectly well that Washington's policy is getting increasingly aggressive and reckless."
The US no longer "hide(s) that it wants to bend to its own will the entire world," demanding other nations worldwide go along with agenda even when harming their own interests.
"In pursuit of global hegemony, the US is not only intimidating the global community by punitive economic measures, but is openly rattling saber."
"For our part, we are doing justice to sovereignty of Iran, which does not respond to arrogant provocations from the US. We confirm Russia's unchanging commitment to the JCPOA" and to working cooperatively with the Islamic Republic — rejecting unlawful US sanctions and other hostile actions against the country.
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