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Top Iranian official blames US for oil market volatility - Report

Gasoil News - Published on Tue, 19 Mar 2019

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Sputnik reported that Iran's oil minister Mr Bijan Zanganeh has criticised US officials over their recent public comments on oil prices, the global energy market, and possible future policy steps; the official believes such remarks from Washington affect international oil prices and could hurt market stability.

Kristian Rouz - Mr Bijan Zanganeh says public comments from US officials have contributed to the recent swings in international oil prices, thus rendering the energy market a more unpredictable environment.

According to a report from the Iranian oil ministry's press agency SHANA on Saturday, Zanganeh criticised remarks made by several top US officials about oil prices, sanctions on certain oil-producing nations, as well as public calls on OPEC by the Trump administration to keep prices in check.

Although the minister didn't mention any names, his comments are believed to come in response to US President Mr Donald Trump's use of Twitter to express his sentiment regarding the state of affairs in the global energy market.

Mr Zanganeh said that "Americans talk a lot and I advise them to talk less. They have caused tensions in the oil market for over a year now and they are responsible for it, and if this trend continues, the market will be more tense."

Mr Trump has repeatedly called on OPEC to not let oil prices dramatically increase, as rising prices push up energy costs in the US. Although the US is currently producing roughly 12 mln bpd, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), its imports stand at 20 mln bpd — meaning the international oil cartel still has some impact on the North American energy market.

Mr Trump has tweeted about oil prices twice in the past several months — in February and back in December, just ahead of OPEC's policy meeting in Vienna, where the oil cartel coordinated deeper output cuts to support prices.

Meanwhile, other US officials have recently made remarks that stirred the anticipation of higher oil prices among investors. For example, State Department Representative for Iran Brian Hook said last week that the global oil supply would exceed demand by 400,000 bpd this year — likely weighing on prices. In this light, Hook said, there is room for the US to revoke its waivers for buyers of Iranian oil — with an aim to bring the Islamic Republic's oil exports under 1 mln bpd.

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Posted By : Rabi Wangkhem on Tue, 19 Mar 2019
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