Iran oil exports hit five-year high

The Cradle, March 11, 2024 —

Officials highlighted that despite Washington’s efforts, sanctions have not affected Tehran’s development growth.

Iran’s oil minister said on 10 March that the nation’s crude oil exports had reached a five-year high since 2018 despite the US sanctions on Tehran’s energy sector. 

Oil minister Javad Owji said, “At the beginning of this administration, oil production in [Iran’s] Khuzestan province stood at 1.7 million barrels per day, which has now reached 2.7 million barrels per day.”

The minister also noted that natural gas production has grown by five percent. Iranian refineries have boosted production capacity through projects implemented by Iranian specialists after multiple foreign nations withdrew due to US sanctions.

Owji made these statements on the sidelines of the contract signing ceremony for the South Pars gas field pressure-boosting project.

“Sanctions have not hindered our development growth,” Owji said. “If we examine the past 40 years, in which year did the Ministry of Petroleum report that the economic growth of oil and gas was over 20% every quarter? … Our economic growth in the first, second, and third months of 1402 [solar hijri year from 21 March 2023–19 March 2024] was over 20%. Let’s judge now: Has the embargo hindered our growth?”

When Owji was asked about former president Donald Trump’s potential return to the US presidential seat, the oil minister said Trump’s return would not affect Iran

“In this government, we signed good contracts with powerful Russian companies, and some fields have been put into operation. Twenty thousand barrels of our production are from the fields with which we have contracts. Some other fields are also on the agenda of the oil company, which is ending the negotiations.”

During Trump’s presidency, brutal sanctions were reinstated on Iran after walking out of the nuclear deal in May 2018, despite Iran’s full compliance with the conditions put forth in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

One of the goals that Washington had was to reduce Iran’s oil exports to near zero. Tehran has, on multiple occasions, denounced the sanctions as an act of “economic war” and “economic terrorism.”

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