Tehran has no plans to leave Opec: Iranian oil minister


Iran has no plans to leave the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec), Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh said in an interview published by the Iranian parliament news site ICANA on Saturday.

“Iran has no plans to leave OPEC and regrets that some members of Opec have turned this organisation into a political forum for confronting two founding members of Opec, meaning Iran and Venezuela,” Zanganeh told ICANA.

“And two regional countries are showing enmity towards us in this organisation. We are not their enemy but they are showing enmity towards us and [they] use oil as a weapon against us in the global market and world.” Zanganeh did not name the two countries.

Tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have spiked this year after the two said they would increase oil production to make up for Iranian crude cut from the market by the United States sanctions.

On Friday, US President Donald Trump’s administration added Iran’s largest petrochemical holding group to its sanctions list, accusing it of indirectly supporting Tehran’s Revolutionary Guards.

Washington said the move aimed to dry up revenues to the elite Iranian military force but analysts called it largely symbolic.

The Trump administration is seeking to intensify economic and military pressure against Iran because of its nuclear and missile programmes as well as its support for proxy groups in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Yemen.