Iran’s Gas Industry Not to Be Affected by US JCPOA Exit: Official
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A top Iranian energy official highlighted the country’s self-sufficiency in the gas industry and said it is not going to face any restrictions following the US withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
In remarks released on Monday, Managing Director of the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) Hamid Reza Araqi pointed to the possible return of anti-Iran sanctions after a recent move by US President Donald Trump to leave the JCPOA and said neither the US withdrawal nor the reimposed sanctions will have any effect on Iran’s gas industry and its gas exports.
“Fortunately, in the NIGC, we do not have any special cooperation with foreign contractors,” he said.
“We manufacture between 80% and 90% of the equipment used for maintaining and establishing refineries inside the country and are self-sufficient in this regard,” the official added.
In a speech from the White House on May 8, Trump pulled his country out of the JCPOA, which was achieved in Vienna in 2015 after years of negotiations among Iran and the Group 5+1 (Russia, China, the US, Britain, France, and Germany).
Following the US exit, Iran and the remaining parties have launched talks to save the accord.
Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei has underlined that any decision to keep the JCPOA running without the US should be conditional on “practical guarantees” from the three European parties to the deal.
In comments on May 23, Ayatollah Khamenei stressed that Europeans must protect Iranian oil sales from the US pressure and continue buying Iranian crude, and must promise they would not seek new negotiations on Iran's missile program and regional activities.
“European banks should safeguard trade with the Islamic Republic. We do not want to start a fight with these three countries (France, Germany, and Britain), but based on their past records, we don't trust them either,” the Leader said.
“Europe should fully guarantee Iran’s oil sales. In case Americans can damage our oil sales..., Europeans should make up for that and buy Iranian oil,” Ayatollah Khamenei stated.