More US sanctions on Iran likely, National Security Adviser John Bolton warns

Forty years of American hostility’ Iran releases video responding to new US sanctions

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Italy and Turkey have been importing around 200,000 bpd of oil from Iran over the past two years, with Greece importing less than 100,000 bpd.

The deputy head of Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards, Brigadier General Hossein Salami, said on Wednesday that his country can flourish under sanctions and would defeat the United States in the economic war.

The record USA production has been a moderating factor of oil prices, although oil got a bump on Thursday after record Chinese crude imports eased concerns that a slowdown in the world's No.2 economy could stoke an emerging fuel glut.

However, he said as the spokesman for the MEA, "I am not at the liberty to give you details about the quantum of crude oil that we will continue to import".

"As OPEC exports continue to rise, inventories continue to build which is putting downward pressure on oil prices", analysts at Bernstein Energy said.

Refinitiv data showed Iranian exports have fallen to 1 million barrels per day (bpd) so far in November, down from around 3 million bpd in mid-2018.

Thanks to the high fiscal breakevens, JP Morgan believes Saudi Arabia would try to keep oil price supported closer to $80/bbl. "Self-insured Iranian tankers engaging in unsafe behavior, with many tons of crude oil on board, is courting environmental and financial disaster".

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According to Refinitiv Eikon data, Iranian crude exports have fallen to 1 million barrels per day (bpd) so far in November, down from nearly 2 million bpd in October and around 3 million bpd in mid-2018.

"From the Suez Canal to the Strait of Malacca and all choke points in between, Iranian tankers are now a floating liability", Hook told reporters.

The U.S. bank also said "payments for the oil by the exempt countries must go into escrow accounts in their local currency" and that this "means the money won't directly go to Iran and it can only be used to buy certain non-sanctioned goods from its crude export customers". "We will police these very aggressively", he added.

"This also came at a time where the U.S., Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia had been boosting oil to record levels", McQueen added.

The State Department reminded the global shipping and insurance industries Wednesday that as part of the Trump administration's "maximum pressure campaign" to get Iran to change its behavior, insuring Iranian tankers will now incur penalties under US sanctions reinstated this week.

"From the Suez Canal to the Strait of Malacca and all choke-points in between, Iranian tankers are a floating liability", Hook said. "This exposes the entire maritime shipping network to huge liability".

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