UPI: European countries can secure crude oil deliveries from Iran provided they sign 2- to 5-year contracts, an Iranian oil executive said. United Press International
TEHRAN, Feb. 23 (UPI) — European countries can secure crude oil deliveries from Iran provided they sign 2- to 5-year contracts, an Iranian oil executive said.
Iranian officials this week said they were halting crude oil deliveries to Great Britain and France, a largely symbolic move that pushed oil prices to 9-month highs nonetheless.
Ahmad Qalebani, managing director of the National Iranian Oil Co., announced that others in Europe were welcome to sign contracts for Iranian crude oil deliveries.
“Only European companies with a 2- to 5-year contract with Iran can purchase the country’s crude, otherwise (Tehran’s) relations with those companies will be reconsidered,” he was quoted by Iran’s state-funded broadcaster Press TV as saying.
He said Iran was waiting for the European to start negotiating oil contacts. Without those commitments, he said, Iran will stop selling oil to them.
Press TV clarified that Iran announced Feb. 15 it was cutting oil to the Netherlands, Spain, Italy, France, Greece and Portugal.
“If companies outside France and the U.K. want to buy crude from Iran, they must sign a 2- to 5-year contract with us, guarantee they will not sell Iranian crude to these two countries, no conditions must be set in the contract and no reference must be made to European sanctions (imposed against Iran),” Qalebani said.
Western sanctions on Iran’s financial sector make it difficult to process crude oil payments.