Fears over Iranian oil exports send crude prices soaring

Thursday, February 16, 2012
By Paul Martin

State-run TV in Iran claims Tehran has stopped exporting oil to the Netherlands, Greece, France, Portugal, Spain and Italy

Saeed Kamali Dehghan
Guardian.co.uk
Wednesday 15 February 2012

Iran has warned that it could cut off oil exports to six European countries in retaliation for the latest sanctions imposed on the regime, causing turmoil in the world’s crude market.

Iran’s state-run English language television, Press TV, initially reported on Wednesday that Tehran had stopped exporting oil to the Netherlands, Greece, France, Portugal, Spain and Italy, which resulted in oil prices jumping up as much as $1 a barrel.

But officials from the country’s foreign and oil ministry scrambled to correct earlier accounts, saying Iran had merely invited ambassadors of the six countries to a meeting to warn them of the possible consequences of their latest decision to put an embargo on the imports of oil from the Islamic republic.

“We deny this report … If such a decision is made, it will be announced by Iran’s supreme national security council,” a spokesman for the country’s oil ministry said.

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