Pompeo Allows Sanctions Exception for Iran Port Development

Cheryl Sanders
November 8, 2018

Futures in NY gained 0.6 per cent. Ministers from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries gathering in Abu Dhabi this weekend will discuss options for 2019 including the scenario of supply curbs, delegates said.

The United States is warning other countries not to allow Iranian oil tankers into their territorial waters or ports, saying such access may run afoul of USA sanctions and not only incur penalties, but also result in catastrophic economic and environmental damage should an accident occur.

The sanctions, however, threatened India's ability to obtain financing for the development of Chabahar, which could potentially open the way for millions of dollars of trade for land-locked Afghanistan and end its dependence on Pakistan's port of Karachi.

The Chabahar Port is considered a gateway to golden opportunities for trade by India, Iran and Afghanistan with central Asian countries besides ramping up trade among the three countries after Pakistan denied transit access to India.

"These activities are vital for the ongoing support of Afghanistan's growth and humanitarian relief", the spokesman said in a statement emailed to Reuters.

These include steps aimed at cutting Iran's sales of oil - the country's main export - "to zero" in a bid to curtail the influence of the regime and its reach in the Middle East.

The South Korean government is breathing a sigh of relief this morning after it was confirmed that Seoul has been granted a waiver from newly-imposed USA sanctions on Iran. It states that India has a major role in bringing peace and development in Afghanistan.

A convinced United States administration told India Today, "The President's South Asia strategy underscores our ongoing support of Afghanistan's economic growth and development as well as our close partnership with India".

And the United States, the official said, seeks to "build on our close relationships with both countries as we execute a policy of maximum pressure to change the Iranian regime's destabilising policies in the region and beyond". Reacting to the Trump administration's decision, USA experts said it was a "right move".

The US is already poised to satisfy most of the increase in global oil demand next year, the IEA forecasts.

Japan leading crude oil wholesaler JXTG Holdings Incorporation says it is preparing to resume imports from Iran after the USA issued a waiver for Tokyo to continue its purchases of oil from the Islamic Republic. It understands India's national security interests.

Meanwhile, US ambassador to Afghanistan John Bass said the US has, after extensive consideration, provided an exception under the Iran Freedom and Counter-Proliferation Act.

Chabahar and INSTC are important strategic projects for India and Afghanistan. "So this waiver is squarely aligned with the U.S. interests", he said.

Other reports by iNewsToday