Unexpected dip in Saudi output lifts oil

China Rejects U.S. Demand To Cut Imports of Iranian Crude Oil by November 4

Key OPEC oil producers seem to be finding it harder than expected to sell their output overseas with resulting build-up in their stockpiles potentially helping them offset the drop in Iranian supplies, as USA sanctions start to bite deeper, Bloomberg reported.

Under the 2015 pact, signed by the US, UK, Britain, China, Russia and the European Union, Tehran agreed to scale back its uranium enrichment programme.

Reuters reported last week that India's oil industry is preparing for a blanket cut in Iranian imports, although officials from the two countries continue to hold talks on the issue.

As an original signatory, the U.S. also pledged to waive secondary sanctions as long as Iran continued to abide by the deap.

Washington also imposed a series of additional sanctions on Iranian entities and individuals, as well as foreign companies in Iran, squeezing Iran economically.

The US has ramped up pressure around the globe, asking countries to stop using Iranian oil by the time sanctions get re-imposed in November.

Markets also anticipated an announcement from Washington due later on Monday detailing renewed U.S. sanctions against major oil exporter Iran, set to be reinstated at 1201 EDT on Tuesday (1601 GMT), according to a U.S. Treasury official.

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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has warned the USA against any attempt to stop Tehran's oil trade, threatening to block the strategically important Strait of Hormuz.

Leszczynski says it is unclear whether Unipec's decision is due to a direct policy to reduce imports from the USA or if it's simply out of the uncertainty over whether tariffs will be imposed by the Chinese government on United States oil in the coming months, as they have threatened. "It shows they have not thought about its consequences", Rouhani was quoted as saying by state news agency IRNA while on an official visit to Austria's capital, Vienna, in July.

She told CNBC with regards to the USA sanctions against Iran kicking in next week, "we're looking at tougher rhetoric and potentially tougher actions over August and September".

Read: Can anyone stop Iran's oil chokehold?

"China and Iran unwaveringly maintain normal trade and economic ties".

"If China is not participating in that, they are a pretty big consumer of Iranian crude oil that leaves global production at a somewhat higher level", added Haworth. "Iran was hoping to sell more than 500,000 [barrels per day] of oil to India in [fiscal year] 2018/2019", the outlet wrote, citing a February statement by Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh. It accounted for 35 percent the Iranian exports last month, according to ship-tracking data compiled by Bloomberg.

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