White House Hints At Easing Of Iran Sanctions For 'Friends And Allies'

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His comments come just one day after the country's foreign minister said US sanctions will have "severe consequences".

In May, the USA brought back sanctions on Iran after withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal which was struck in 2015.

Bloomberg reported that close us allies South Korea and Japan had received waivers along with India, which relies heavily on supplies from Iran, adding that a list of all countries getting waivers was expected to be released officially on Monday.

The US administration has agreed to allow eight countries to continue purchasing Iran's crude oil after Washington's sanctions on Tehran take place next Monday, a senior official said Friday.

"The United States is in the midst of an internal process to consider significant reduction exceptions for individual countries, but that is only on a case-by-case basis", State Department's Deputy Spokesperson Robert Paladino told reporters.

India had imported about 22 million tonnes of crude oil from Iran in 2017-18 and initially planned to raise that to about 30 million tonnes in 2018-19.

"The waivers granted to these eight countries shows that the market needs Iran's oil and it can not be pulled out of the market". The companies will be allowed to import 1.25 million tons a month up to March 2019, the same as they ordered for October and November.

That's significantly lower than the peak of 2.7 million bpd in June this year, but still stubbornly high compared to some analyst estimates that the predicted sanctions could possibly choke off close to 2 million bpd of Iran's oil exports. They still have to decide on how to split the quantum and on the form of payments, the source said.

A waiver will come as a big relief to Indian Oil and MRPL, the two largest Iranian oil consumers.

"We still expect that the global oil market will be in deficit in 4Q18", the bank said. "And the sanctions that are reimposed on November 5 will target critical sectors of Iran's economy, such as energy, shipping and the ship-building sectors, as well as the provision of insurance and transactions involving the Central Bank of Iran and designated Iranian financial institutions". Sources further said that a series of briefings will be held in the next few days to provide details about the new concessions. Indian officials, in their discussions with United States counterparts have pointed out that first, Indian refineries are configured to work with Iranian crude, and second, Iran still offers better credit, insurance and freight terms to Indian buyers, which remains a key consideration. Saudi Arabia could make up the difference; while the kingdom has threatened to use oil in retaliation for worldwide punishment over its killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, it also is eager to squeeze Iran, its regional rival.

Currently, India pays its third largest oil supplier in euros using European banking channels.