National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) Director for international affairs Mohsen Qamsari said Iran is currently looking for new options to find more customers for its crude oil exports.
“Iran is looking for new options to increase its customers and oil exports. This issue is not what we need, but the world markets also need Iran’s oil,” Mohsen Qamsari told the oil ministry's website.
“Refining and oil companies in the world are willing to resume cooperation with us in technical and investment sectors due to the structure of Iran’s petroleum industry, but this issue does not necessarily mean that if Total or Shell are operating in Iran they must purchase Iran’s oil,” he said.
“Despite international sanctions [slapped on the country] over the past years, Iran has managed to preserve the traditional buyers of its oil,” he added.
Iran and European countries are currently ready to resume their oil cooperation, the official said, adding: “However, it must be noted that gaining back the market is not a simple task, but due to the existence of tools, we have the possibility to do so.”
“Over the past two years, due to the share Iran has had in energy supply to Europe and particularly the interest of West European countries in Iran’s crude oil, Iran will try its best to preserve its relations with its traditional markets in Europe,” Qamsari said.
He noted that oil refineries in European countries saw their profits fall due to their attempts to find alternatives to Iran’s crude oil due to sanctions.
“Due to technical and financial considerations and also the nature of Iran’s crude oil, many refiners are willing to sign contracts with specific producers and meet their needs through them,” he added.
“Given the new circumstances, a large number of traditional buyers of Iranian crude oil are making the preparations and providing the facilities for raising their crude oil purchase from Iran,” Qamsari said.
Qamsari said crude oils with API gravities varying between 20 and 40 are currently produced and consumed in the world.
“I think that despite the fact that the market is facing crude oil oversupply, this market is still willing to purchase from Iran due to the quality of its crude oil. For oil-related reasons, many refineries are willing to buy it,” he continued.
“Big oil companies in the world are ready to cooperate with Iran in different sectors. They have announced this issue many times in the media, but they are still waiting for the preparation of conditions,” Qamsari concluded.