We don’t need to sell oil to Europe: AhmadinejadJanuary 27th, 2012 - 6:50 am ICT by IANS
Tehran, Jan 27 (IANS) Iran does not need to sell its oil to European nations, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said in response to oil embargo imposed by the European Union.
The EU Monday imposed further sanctions against Iran’s oil exports and the central bank to ramp up pressure over its nuclear program. The oil ban will take effect from July 1.
Sanctions cannot stop Iran’s progress, Ahmadinejad said at a gathering in the southeastern Kerman city Thursday, adding “We do not need to sell oil to Europe.”
Lawmaker Nasser Soudani said Wednesday that parliament was mulling over a plan to cut oil exports to EU member states.
Ahmadinejad said the action against the central bank is a useless initiative, , Xinhua reported.
Iran’s total foreign trade is worth $200 billion, and only $24 billion of which is with Europe, he said.
“In the past, about 90 percent of Iran’s trade was with Europeans, but nowadays it is about 10 percent,” he added.
The EU currently purchases nearly 20 percent of Iranian crude exports, with countries such as Greece and Italy most reliant on Iran’s oil.
Persian Gulf nations such as Saudi Arabia have offered to step up its own production to compensate for any shortfall caused by the ban on Iranian oil.
Iranian officials have threatened to close the strategic Strait of Hormuz if their oil exports are sanctioned. The country heavily relies on crude exports and its by-products for annual revenue.
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