US President Barack Obama emphasized on Wednesday that Washington will not seek future reductions of oil purchases from Iran and is committed to keep Tehran’s oil export at the levels of 2013.
“In the Joint Plan of Action, the interim arrangement to address concerns with Iran’s nuclear program reached between the P5+1, European Union and Iran in November 2013, the United States committed to allow oil purchases from Iran to continue at the levels that prevailed at that time. Accordingly, my Administration is not seeking further reductions of Iranian oil purchases,” Obama said in a statement released by the White House.
Dean Henderson, an American author and political analyst, has described Obama’s statement as ambiguous given that no reduction in oil purchases was ever planned under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) agreed between Iran and the P5+1 back in July.
“I hope it is an olive branch to the Iranians that they are actually going to begin the lifting of the sanction,” Henderson told Press TV’s Business Desk in an exclusive interview.
“But we will have to just wait and see because this is a memorandum and is ambiguous,” he added.
Under the US-engineered regime of sanctions still in effect against Iran as a result of disputes over the Iranian nuclear energy program, Iran is allowed to sell only some 1 million barrels of oil per day.
Based on the JCPOA, a series of economic sanctions against Iran – including the limits on purchases of oil from the country – will be lifted in return for steps by the country to limit certain aspects of its nuclear energy activities.
Iran currently exports 1.1 million barrels of crude oil per day and hopes to get back to its pre-sanctions level of 2.2 million, last reached in 2012. Iran’s total production now stands at 3.1 million barrels per day.