One of the priorities of Iran's Oil Ministry is to restore the country's "lost" share in oil market, local media quoted Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar-Zanganeh as saying on Monday.
Namdar-Zanganeh, who was endorsed as new oil minister by the parliament on Thursday, said his short-term plan included the return of Iran's oil back to the world markets, adding that " Revival of Iran's lost share in oil markets is among my top priority jobs," semi-official Fars news agency reported.
Earlier this month, U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill to impose tougher sanctions on Iran. The bill offers a cut in Iran 's oil exports by one million barrels per day over a year.
Western sanctions have already reduced Iran's oil exports by half from about 2.2 million barrels per day (bpd) and the new U.S. bill will cut exports by a further one million barrels per day to near zero.
The Iranian minister said Iran is facing tough sanctions slapped on the country to hinder its production and exports of crude oil, adding that "Therefore, we need to undertake measures to bolster our management and show to the enemies that the colonialists could not speak to Iran with the language of sanctions."
He stressed that he has plans to raise the country's oil production to 4.2 million barrels per day (bpd).
Moreover, Zanganeh noted on Monday that Iran intends to broaden its cooperation with the member states of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). "Under the present circumstances, we have more expectations from our OPEC friends who are mainly our neighbors," he was quoted as saying.
Iran will work with OPEC member states based on interaction and cooperation in order to boost the influence of this organization in the global markets, he added.
Before the Western sanctions targeted the oil industry of Iran in the past years, the country had been one of the major oil producers in OPEC.
The United States and the West have slapped different kinds of sanctions on Iran's oil and gas exports and financial sectors over the country's sensitive nuclear activities, which Iran insists for civilian purpose.