Iran urges enhanced co-op with Russia, China, neighbors

Ramezan Sharif

Fear over decreasing demand from China triggered a slow down on Friday, after the country's main oil producer Sinopec, trim down its purchase of U.S. crude.

Iran wants guarantees from Europe to maintain banking cooperation and investments in Iran's oil fields as well as continuation of cooperation between Iranian and European small and medium-sized enterprises, Qasemi noted.

In May, the United States pulled out of a 2015 deal between world powers and Tehran under which worldwide sanctions on Iran were lifted in return for curbs on its nuclear programme.

The rhetoric between the USA and Iran remains heated, despite Trump tweeting last week that he would be willing to meet with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

Tamar Essner, an analyst at Nasdaq Inc., said there are "no signs whatsoever that this trade war is going to clear up anytime soon", and that has "caused investors to continue to trim net length, take profits, and de-risk that position with the sense that oil's upside is limited unless there's material reduction in Iranian barrels".

US President Donald Trump announced in May Washington's withdrawal from a landmark multinational nuclear deal with Iran.

The controversial move was preceded by a deadly crush of Hajj pilgrims in September 2015, which killed more than 460 Iranians.

Trump claimed the deal wasn't stopping Iran supporting terror groups or developing ballistic missiles.

More news: Powerful quake strikes Indonesia, killing at least three people

Fars reported authorities arrested 20 protesters and numerous protest leaders were women. The Iranian rial has fallen to 99,000 to the US dollar despite a government-imposed rate of 44,000.

While the Trump administration has said it wants to cut Iranian oil exports to zero by November 4, most analysts viewed that target as unlikely.

Hardship is coming to Iran.

Currently China is the world's top buyer of crude oil, including from Iran, making Chinese refusal to cooperate a major challenge to the US.

Iran's navy and its paramilitary Revolutionary Guard routinely conduct seaborne exercises in the Gulf and the strait. The US Energy Information Administration calls it "the world's most important oil transit chokepoint", with 20% of oil traded worldwide moving through the waterway, which is about 30 miles wide at its narrowest point.

"This exercise was conducted with the aim of controlling and safeguarding the safety of the worldwide waterway [in the Persian Gulf]", said General Ramazan Sharif, spokesman for Iranian Revolutionary Guards according to state news agency IRNA.

He also said Tehran expects the European countries to bring forward a practical package of proposals to salvage Iranian nuclear deal, also known as JCPOA, after the USA pull-out in May. He did not elaborate.

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