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08 November 2018, 06:11 | Erica Roy
OPEC output cuts likely next year
However, the administration granted waivers allowing eight major oil-importing countries - including China and India, Iran's top two customers - continue buying Iranian petroleum products without penalty for another six months.
The U.S. sanctions on Tehran come as the Trump administration withdrew from the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran in May, saying it had not stopped Iran from developing its ballistic missile program and intervening in neighboring countries.
Saudi-led oil cartel and its allies, including Russian Federation, decided in June to relax output curbs in place since 2017, after pressure from United States (U.S.) President Donald Trump to reduce oil prices and make up for supply losses from Iran.
As the USA sanctions snapped back into place, Washington issued what Pompeo called "temporary" exemptions for eight countries (China, India, Italy, Greece, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and Turkey).
The exemption for Chabahar comes as good news for India and Afghanistan, but undercuts the Trump administration's portrayal of the sanctions as the "toughest ever".
Futures in NY gained 1 per cent. Ministers from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries gathering in Abu Dhabi this weekend will discuss options for 2019 including the scenario of fresh supply cuts, said delegates. "These activities are vital for the ongoing support of Afghanistan's growth and humanitarian relief".
A return to oil production cuts by the Organisation of Oil Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies can not be ruled out next year, a senior OPEC source said yesterday.
Representatives of India, Afghanistan and Iran met a little more than two weeks ago in New Delhi, despite looming USA sanctions, to discuss operationalization of the port, which is seen as key to connect India and Afghanistan to Iran and Central Asia, bypassing Pakistan.
Pompeo's decision to give India exemption from imposition of certain sanctions for the development of the port is driven by the South Asian strategy, which was announced by President Donald Trump in August. "We seek to build on our close relationships with both the countries as we execute a policy of maximum pressure to change the Iranian regime's destabilising policies in the region and beyond".
India, Smith argued, "made a convincing case" that its principal interest in the port was to develop alternative infrastructure links to Afghanistan that bypass Pakistan, which also serves the United States national security interests.
"We have not seen much, if any, demand for the Special Purpose Vehicle".
Trump's decision has been opposed by European powers as well as other nations including India, which has largely warm relations with Iran.
Chabahar and INSTC are important strategic projects for India and Afghanistan.
"Where Chabahar is critical to India's access to and assistance towards ensuring a stable Afghanistan, India's energy needs require a basket of energy suppliers", Pande said. "So this waiver is squarely aligned with the United States interests", he said.
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