Oil prices rise as Iranian crude exports fall

"Some of our companies have already nominated their quota for November", said the Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas to PTI.

"We view this [oil] as one of our top national security priorities", a senior administration official told the Free Beacon at the time.

File image of Dharmendra Pradhan.

Trump administration officials told the Free Beacon in June they are "not granting waivers" to some countries importing Iranian oil, but walked that statement back late Monday when a US official disclosed it is now actively working to grant "individual countries" waivers from the new oil sanctions.

"Likely, India and Iran will agree to use Rupee payments instead of USA dollar payments, something already tried between 2013 and 2015, with Iran then using Rupees to import food, medicines and other commodities from India", said Leszczynski.

He added: "We were trying to balance our relationship with the USA and Iran, at the same time keeping our energy and security interest in mind". Speaking to media, IndianOil chairman Sanjiv Singh confirmed his company was among the two which contracted Iranian supplies in November.

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Reuters said that Indian Oil would buy six million barrels of oil and Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals three million barrels.

Singh said options for paying for Iranian oil are under discussions. This would signal an attempt to bypass usa sanctions on Iranian transactions using the dollar - the dominant currency in global oil trade.

"Even without sanctions also, Iran had been accepting payments in rupee. So let us see how it evolves", he said.

We were trying to balance our relationship with the U.S. and Iran, at the same time keeping our energy and security interest in mind. It had planned to import 9 MT of Iranian oil in 2018-19 financial year or 0.75 MT a month. The administration is said to have softened its stance of nixing Iran from SWIFT as European allies mount a pressure campaign.

Some veteran Iran watchers cautioned against criticizing the administration for its decision to consider oil waivers, telling the Free Beacon it is very hard for nations to cut their imports to zero in the matter of months.

Oil prices rose on Tuesday on growing evidence of falling crude exports from Iran, OPEC's third-largest producer, before the imposition of new US sanctions and a partial shutdown in the Gulf of Mexico due to Hurricane Michael.

Nayara Energy, formerly Essar Oil, too is stopping import from the Persian Gulf nation.

The decrease apparently was fueled by buyers seeking alternatives ahead of the start of USA sanctions on November 4. Some sanctions took effect from 6 August while those affecting the oil and banking sectors will start from 4 November.

UCO Bank and IDBI Bank have been identified to route the payment as the two have no exposure to the U.S. financial system.

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