Amid increasing oil exports to Europe, Iran is determined to increase its production to pre-sanctions level of four million barrels per day.
Tehran may only negotiate joining oil freeze plan when that target has been achieved. Now, joining this plan for Iran is a volunteer act of self-sanctioning.
This statement was made by Iranian Minister of Petroleum Bijan Namdar Zangeneh to Iran’s Press TV.
The oil freezing plan mentioned by the Minister has been put forward by the OPEC and non-OPEC major oil producers in the beginning of 2016 with the aim to curb the oil output of those countries at the level of January 2016 in order to tackle current oil glut problem of the global market and to push up oil prices which fell 65 percent since June 2014.
Managing Director of National Iranian Oil Company Rokneddin Javadi told Bloomberg that Iran would reach to pre-sanctions volumes of oil production (4 million barrels per day) by July and pre-sanction oil export volume (2.2 million barrels per day) by the end of this summer.
Iran considers oil freezing plan unfair and rejects to join it for now.
The Islamic Republic will take any move to regain its lost market share, said Zangeneh by blaming Saudi Arabia for the freefall oil prices above $100 per barrel to around $40 per barrel.
Iranian Minister of Petroleum further added that oil prices plunged as a result of the persistence of the Saudis to keep their oil production at 10 million barrels per day by underrating the prices that Iran quotes its clients.
Saudi Arabia is suffering major losses by persisting on keeping its oil production at the current level, he said.
The minister previously said Saudis pursue the strategy to bring down oil prices and accordingly to harm Iran.
Nevertheless, Zangeneh stressed out that the country can do with oil prices even at the current level of around $40 per barrel.
Moreover, Iran increased its oil export to Europe up to 500,000 barrels per day in April, according to the data published by International Oil Daily. Iran’s oil sales to French Total amount to 230,000 barrels per day while oil deliveries to Turkey stood at 100,000 barrels per day and to Syria 50,000 barrels per day.
What’s more, Iran signed new contracts with European companies on exporting oil.
In accordance with these contracts inked with French Total and Spanish Sepsa, Iran plans to export 250,000 to 300,000 barrels per day to Europe in the near future.
Iranian Minister Zangeneh belives that the prospects for Iran’s oil industry are promising. A great number of European and Asian companies have already shown a strong interest to take up projects in Iran.
He further stressed that the growing interest of Europe and Asia in Iran’s oil industry could eventually make the U.S. facilitate the participation of American companies in this sector in Iran.
Although most of the sanctions have been cleared in January 2016, Iran still has problems with banking system. The U.S. sanction which bans to conduct transactions in U.S. dollar with Iran is still in place, and the export of U.S. technologies to the Islamic Republic is also prohibited which creates obstacles for Iran to find investment and cooperate with international companies.
The new oil investment framework known as Iran Petroleum Contract will be unveiled by July, according to the Iranian officials.
According to the BP’s statistical review of world energy 2015, Iran holds 9.3 percent of the world’s total proven oil reserves.
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