|Date: 27/06/2012 Time: 01:43:00 PM
The European oil embargo on Iran formally began
last January but a six month period till July 1 was given to allow big EU
importers of Iranian oil like Greece, Italy and Spain to adjust to the
situation and for the remaining contracts with Iran to run out, a senior EU
official told Journalists in Brussels Wednesday.
"From July 1st Brussels time there will be a complete prohibition of import
of Iranian oil to the EU and the termination of exemptions," stressed the
official speaking on condition of anonymity.
EU insurance companies will from 1 July stop insuring Iranian oil
transport, said the official, noting that 85 percent of oil transport
insurance is done by European firms.
The import ban concerns the 27-member EU states but Brussels is
encouraging other Iranian oil importers like China, India and South Korea to
join the ban, said the official.
He noted that it will not be easy for third countries to substitute the
insurance, transport and financial services by European companies in the oil
"If Chinese ships want to transport Iranian oil without insurance, it is
their problem," said the EU official.
The European oil embargo is having a tremendous effect on Iran's economy
and that is a reason why Iran agreed to resume nuclear talks after the EU
announced its oil embargo in January.
Iran and the group of 5+1 held their last round of talks in Moscow on 18-19
Twenty percent of Iran's oil revenue comes from EU member states and the
oil embargo will have an effect on the country's economy, argued the official.
The oil embargo is to pressure Iran to resolve its nuclear programme issue
in accordance with its international obligations, said the official and added
that the oil sanctions will be kept under constant review.
There is enough oil on the spot market with Iraq and Libya also resuming
their oil exports, said the official, noting that "Iraq will take over Iran by