U.S. oil exports fall as India turns to Iran ahead of sanctions

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USA considering waivers on Iran oil sanctions Reuters, Washington: The United States is actively considering sanctions waivers for countries that are reducing their imports of Iranian oil, a U.S. government official said on Friday.

Iran's exports will fall to 1.1 million b/d in October, Platts Analytics projects.

U.S. crude exports can not increase rapidly enough to replace Iranian barrels, until the Permian pipeline bottleneck eases in mid-2019.

Worldwide benchmark Brent crude oil futures were at $85.05 per barrel at 0653 GMT, up 47 cents, or 0.6 percent from their last close.

Despande went on to say what innumerable analysts have already said: that the big question is if Saudi Arabia has the ability to make up for the shortfall, and while he pointed out they might be able to ramp up appropriately in nine months' time, supplying enough oil in the near term is more problematic. Unsurprisingly, when news of the "secret deal" broke, Iran accused Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation on Wednesday of breaking OPEC's agreement on output cuts.

"On the one hand, we have the shouting of the arrogant powers and politicians of imperialist America.on the other, we have the economic problems of the nation and the tightness of the livelihood of a large portion of the weak people in the country", he remarked.

Indian buyers reduced U.S. crude purchases and loaded up on Iranian oil ahead of the restart of United States sanctions next month and as the WTI-Brent differential narrowed, according to traders and shipping intelligence firm Kpler.

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In September, Indian buyers increased purchases of Iranian crude to 502,000 billion per day, up 111,000 billion per day over August.

She also said that the ICJ's decision on Iran-U.S. dispute is binding for Washington and must be obeyed.

United States oil shipments to India fell to 84,000 barrels per day (bpd) last month, from a record high of 347,000 bpd in June, the news agency reported on Friday, citing traders and shipping intelligence firm Kpler.

India, Iran's top client after China, has close diplomatic ties with Iran, where it is building a strategic port called Chabahar that is expected to be operational by 2019. The Indian oil refiners buy Iranian crude at $3-5 a barrel discount compared to that from other parts of Middle East. Throughout the week, hedge funds and speculators were active in the market, buying at dips and pushing prices up.

Iran's key oil customers are opting for more medium sour crudes from Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Russia and UAE, which is causing prices of these grades to soar and putting pressure on global refinery margins.

"The Saudis won't flood the market and they don't want to see it oversupplied", said Giovanni Staunovo, an analyst at UBS Group AG.

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