US allows India, 7 nations to continue buying Iranian oil ahead of sanctions
The US government has agreed to let eight countries, including close allies Japan and South Korea, as well as India, keep buying Iranian oil after it re-imposes sanctions on Tehran from next week onward, according to a report in Bloomberg on Friday, citing a US official.
Iran’s biggest oil customers are majorly Asian countries. These countries have been seeking sanctions waivers to allow them to still buy some of its oil.
Bloomberg reported that close US allies such as Japan and South Korea had received waivers along with India, which relies heavily on supplies from Iran. It also added that a list of all countries getting waivers was expected to be released officially on Monday.
A Chinese official told Reuters that discussions are going on regarding the sanctions and its repercussions with the US government. He stated and that a result was expected over the next couple of days.
Clayton Allen of Height Securities said in a note on Friday, “We think Trump will agree to China importing some volumes, similar to the treatment that India and South Korea receive.” Allen also said, “The US may use waivers to slow-walk implementation, but these will not apply indefinitely.”
However, analysts said that any potential Iranian oil sanction waivers would likely only be temporary in nature until the next development.
Financial institution, Goldman Sachs said that it expects Iran’s crude oil exports to fall to 1.15 million barrels per day (bpd) by the end of this year, down from around 2.5 million bpd in mid-2018.