EghtesadOnline: President Ebrahim Raeisi said Iran is not concerned about finding customers for its oil and it has different options to continue the export of crude and oil derivatives.
"There are no worries about exporting oil, as we have a lot of possibilities and grounds for oil sales," Raeisi said before a parliament hearing on his proposed Cabinet members, including Javad Owji as Oil Ministry nominee, ISNA reported.
During his speech, Raeisi said one of his priorities would be to export more added-value refined oil products.
As talks to end US sanctions on Iran's energy industry have stalled, the National Iranian Oil Company is producing 2.52 million barrels of crude oil per day.
Former oil minister, Bijan Namdar Zanganeh, said last month that the next Iranian government should make it a priority to boost oil production to 6.5 million barrels per day.
Higher output will “improve the country’s security and political power”, he added.
"I cannot accept that there is no market for oil," he said, noting that Iraq never pumped more than 3 million bpd but it is now producing more and finding buyers for it.
Despite the threat of US sanctions looming over buyers of Iranian oil, China's independent refineries have maintained some level of Iranian crude imports, mainly Iran Light and some Iran Heavy, in the past few years, according to market sources.
Talks in Vienna aimed at reviving the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action and removing US sanctions on Iran's energy sector have gone nowhere since Iran's presidential election on June 18.
A seventh round was expected to start after Raeisi's Aug. 5 inauguration, but that has not been announced.
On Aug. 5, Raeisi said Iran would support any diplomatic plan to remove the sanctions.
Uncertainty over nuclear talks creates a real possibility that 1.5 million bpd of expected Iranian supply growth through August 2022 will not hit the market, said Paul Sheldon, chief geopolitical adviser for Platts Analytics.
Iran has for years aspired to generate other income sources than oil to run the country. China, Pakistan and Bangladesh have been taking LPG from Iran.
The Iranian Parliament started hearings on Raeisi's Cabinet choices on Aug. 21 and a vote is expected on Aug. 24.
Iranian crudes are mostly sour in quality but due to their high sulfur content, they normally have a higher specific gravity and are classified as heavy or medium, with gravities ranging from 27 to 34 API.
The country's main export grade Iran Light is a medium sour grade with 33.6 API gravity and 1.46% sulfur content, according to the crude assay published by the state-owned NIOC.
The Iran Heavy export grade is a heavy sour crude with an API gravity of 29.5 and sulfur content of 1.77%.
Iranian crudes compete directly with grades such as Saudi Arabia's Arab Heavy, Arab Light and Arab Medium; Iraq's Basrah Light, Basrah Medium and Basrah Heavy; Russia's Urals; the UAE's Upper Zakum; Oman Crude Blend; Kuwait Export Crude; Venezuela's Mesa 30 and Merey 16; and Mexico's Mata.