Saudi Arabia Reduced Oil Production in July

06 August, 2018, 06:57 | Author: Eric Barnett
  • China rejects US demand to reduce Iran oil imports report

Interestingly, China has also rejected a USA request to cut imports from its biggest customer, Iran, for the sake of fulfilling US president Donald Trump's objective of achieving a complete halt of outgoing Iranian crude supplies; China's rejection would presumably lessen the chance of a market tightening that many analysts are still anxious about and consequently help keep prices relatively low - which is what Trump was demanding from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).

Beijing has, however, agreed not to ramp up purchases of Iranian crude, according to the officials, who asked not to be identified because discussions with China and other countries continue.

China has however agreed it will not increase oil imports from Iran, in a move which would directly challenge the United States blockade.

Iran's currency plummeted this week in the lead-up to 7 August, when Washington is due to reimpose a first lot of economic sanctions following Trump's withdrawal from the nuclear deal.

China's ministries of Foreign Affairs and Commerce didn't immediately reply Friday to faxed requests for comment.

The move was condemned by U.S. allies including the UK, Germany and France.

While South Korea has halted imports from Iran and reports in India indicate it may also bow to the U.S. campaign, Washington's entreaties to Beijing have proved fruitless, two unnamed officials told Bloomberg.

The oil market has been speculating about how much of Iran's exports could be eroded by the US sanctions, with analysts from BMI Research to Mizuho Securities predicting that China might boost its imports of cheap supplies from the state and offset cuts by other nations.

Chinese buyers had already slowed their purchases of USA oil to avoid a likely import tariff threatened by Beijing, reports Reuters.

Last month around 35 percent of Iranian oil exports went to China.

India's crude oil imports from Iran increased by about 30 percent to a record 768,000 barrels per day (bpd) in July, Reuters reported citing tanker arrival data.

Other oil producing countries, led by Saudi Arabia, have vowed to increase production to cover the loss of Iranian oil. Brent crude futures settled at $73.21 per barrel, down 24 cents from their last close. The London marker is still up about 40 percent from a year earlier.



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