Source: Press TV
India's Oil Ministry is adopting measures to provide insurance coverage for tankers transferring crude oil from Iran, in an attempt to prevent the US-engineered EU sanctions from disrupting Iranian oil shipments to the Asian country.
An Iranian oil tanker (file photo)
"We are providing for the contingency. We are taking all steps to ensure supplies are not hit," Indian Oil Secretary G.C. Chaturvedi told reporters on Friday.
Insurers inside the European Union, a major provider of reinsurance, will likely be prohibited from covering liabilities relating to Iranian crude oil as of July as a part of the US-engineered EU sanctions on Iran.
On January 23, under pressure from the United States, the European Union foreign ministers approved new sanctions against Tehran. The sanctions are meant to prevent member states from buying Iranian crude or doing business with its central bank. The sanctions will come into force as of July 1.
India's Oil Ministry has asked the country's Finance Ministry to get state-owned reinsurer General Insurance Corp. to provide insurance coverage for domestic ships transferring crude from Iran, Chaturvedi added.
He further said that the Indian Oil Ministry has requested the Shipping Ministry to allow refiners to import oil from the Islamic Republic on Iranian ships.
"The ministry of shipping is considering our proposal," Chaturvedi noted.
India is one of the biggest customers of the Iranian crude. The Asian country accounts for more than 10 percent of the Islamic Republic's annual oil exports, worth about $12 billion.
The United States and the European Union have imposed tough financial sanctions as well as oil embargoes against Iran since the beginning of 2012, claiming that the country's nuclear energy program includes a military component.
Tehran refutes such allegations, noting that frequent inspections by the International Atomic Energy Agency have never found any diversion in Iran's nuclear energy program toward military purposes.
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