Saturday, 17 November, 2018

Pompeo Allows Sanctions Exception for Iran Port Development

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif
Laurie Berry | 09 November, 2018, 07:55

Pipelines are coming online in the Permian and Cushing is getting filled up again, which pressures oil prices to the downside, Cramer said.

Sanctions snapped back on Monday, the markets didn't even blink and prices further dropped as the United States said it was granting six-month waivers to eight importers of Iranian oil to continue buying crude from Tehran.

The United States on Wednesday warned all ports and insurance companies to steer clear of Iranian ships, which it called a "floating liability" after the imposition of sweeping U.S. sanctions.

But there was no clarity or response to whether if United States was considering waiver for Chabahar and the International North-South Trade Corridor (INSTC). India has committed $500 million to the project and $2 billion to build a railway line from Chabahar to Hajigaj in Afghanistan.

On Wednesday, Washington warned global shipping and insurance industries not to allow Iranian oil tankers into their territorial waters or ports, saying such access may run afoul the reimposed sanctions, in addition to increasing the possibility of catastrophic economic and environmental damage if any accidents occur.

A convinced USA 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".

"We are making it abundantly clear to the Iranian regime that they will face mounting financial isolation until they fundamentally change their destabilizing behavior".

Virat Kohli lashes out at fan
In response, Kohli said, "Okay, I don't think you should live in India then. you should go and live somewhere else no". Rang De Basanti actor Siddharth called the Indian skipper's comment " an idiotic set of words ".

Chabahar and INSTC are important strategic projects for India and Afghanistan.

Adding that while the "exception" has been granted after much deliberation, the strategic importance of these projects can not be ignored.

The exemptions were linked to the reconstruction effort in Afghanistan, to which India has been a key contributor, a role that was recognised and reinforced by president Donald Trump in the South Asia strategy he announced in August 2017, earmarking an expanded role for New Delhi. "These activities are vital for the ongoing support of Afghanistan's growth and humanitarian relief".

Afghanistan's imports of Iranian petroleum products were also being exempted from sanctions, the spokesperson added.

The exemption for Chabahar comes as good news for India and Afghanistan, but undercuts the Trump administration's portrayal of the sanctions as the "toughest ever".

As an extension to the same, the International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC), is being hailed as a "game changer". Fears of the potential supply glut dampened a rally early in the session driven by Chinese data that showed record oil imports.

Imports rose 8.1 percent for the first 10 months of the year from the same period last year to 377.16 million tonnes, or 9.06 million bpd, on track for another record year of shipments.

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