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Oil sanctions on Iran will push crude prices to $160: Iran Finance Minister

Source: Press TV

Iran's Minister of Economic Affairs and Finance Shamseddin Hosseini says if EU sanctions against the Islamic Republic take effect, oil prices will soar to as high as USD 160 per barrel.

Iran's Minister of Economic Affairs and Finance Shamseddin Hosseini (file photo)

In an interview with CNN, Hosseini said Iran has endured sanctions for 33 years and "this really shows that the economy, the economic strength of Iran is in such a way that can withstand these sanctions and will not be the only economy to suffer."

"We must pay close attention when we speak of oil revenues and sanctions against oil sales, who are the winners and the losers of such sanctions?"

Hosseini said the embargo would also likely hurt the European Union, which is grappling with its own weakened economy.

"Indeed, it is difficult. But not just for Iran. And we can all rest assured that there will be a considerable increase in international oil market prices. Now, is this the best approach?"

Even the International Monetary Fund (IMF) "says as a result of these sanctions, oil prices will perhaps reach and hover around USD 160 per barrel," he said.

In March, the IMF warned that if Iranian oil supplies are disrupted, crude prices may spike by up to 30 percent, sending shockwaves through the global economy.

Global oil prices have continually climbed this year following Iran's move to stop oil sales to some European firms, carried out in response to EU's oil sanctions against the country.

On January 23, the EU approved new sanctions on Iran's oil and financial sectors. The sanctions are meant to prevent EU member states from buying Iranian crude or doing business with its central bank. The embargoes are slated to go into force as of July 1.

The move came after the US imposed new sanctions against Iran on New Year's Eve with the aim of preventing other countries from importing Iranian oil and conducting transactions with its central bank.

The US and some Western countries accuse Tehran of pursuing military objectives in its nuclear energy program and have used this pretext to push for four rounds of UN sanctions and a series of unilateral sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

Iran has repeatedly refuted Western allegations, arguing that as a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency, it is entitled to develop and acquire nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.

... Payvand News - 05/20/12 ... --

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