Iran still resolved to regain lost oil market

‘Iran still resolved to regain lost oil market’

Mon Oct 31, 2016 5:27PM

As OPEC is preparing for a crucial summit to discuss a plan to freeze crude oil output, Iran says its resolve to regain the share of the global oil market that it lost as a result of multiple years of sanctions remains unchanged.

Ali Kardor, the managing director of the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), told the domestic media that Iran’s oil production has reached the pre-sanctions level of around 4 million barrels per day (mb/d). Kardor added that the country’s exports also stand at 2.44 mb/d.

OPEC member states agreed in a meeting in Algiers last month to cut their production to a range of 32.50-33.0 million barrels per day – the first such decision in eight years. Nevertheless, they excluded Iran, Libya and Nigeria who were allowed to continue producing at “the maximum level that makes sense”.

Iran had already made it clear that it is determined to restore its oil production to pre-sanctions levels.

On a related front, the latest market figures show that Iran’s exports of oil to Asia increased by 73 percent in September year-on-year.

The figures released by Reuters showed that Iran exported an average of 1.80 mb/d to the world’s largest consumption markets over the period. The country’s exports are expected to increase further in October to reach as high as 1.86 mb/d, the news service added.

Under a draconian regime of sanctions imposed against Iran from 2012 to 2015, the country could only export around 1 mb/d of oil. The sanctions also barred any foreign investment in the Iranian oil sector projects, thus leading to a decline in its production abilities.

In line with a nuclear deal that Iran signed with the five permanent members of the Security Council plus Germany last year, the sanctions against Iran’s oil industry were lifted in January among other reliefs that were provided to the country in return for its moves to restrict certain aspects of its nuclear energy activities.

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