At EU foreign ministers meeting in Brussels on December 1, 2011 – the British foreign minister, Israel-Firster William Hague and his German counterpart, Guido Westerwelle, failed in their attempts to push the EU to impose sanctions which, they claimed, would “dry up Iran’s financial sources.”
However, many western diplomats and oil industry experts believe that such sanctions will hurt European countries, especially, Greece, Spain and Itlay – than the Islamic Republic. They believe that while oil export brings 50% of Iranian budget revenue – even a small rise in oil prices as a result of an introduction of an EU-wide embargo would more than compensate Tehran for any losses from being obliged to re-route displaced supplies to Asia at discounted prices.
“Maybe the aim of sanctions is to help Italy, Spain and Greece to collapse and make the EU a smaller club,” one oil inside trader joked.
“The likely increase in oil prices that would result from a ban would be felt by all (European) oil refiners, not just those that are big customers for Iranian oil,” ratings agency Fitch said last week.
“I hope there will not be an EU embargo on Iranian oil. It will be very very difficult to replace Iranian oil exports. Europe is already experiencing economic problems and these sanctions will worsen the situation,” Secretary General Abdullah El-Badri told the 20th World Petroleum Congress in Doha.
Islamic Republic is the second largest OPEC oil producer after the US-Israel poodle Saudi ‘royals’. It produces about 2.3 million barrels of oil per day – out which 865,000 barrels a day is purchased by EU.
EU foreign ministers, however, slapped sanctions on an extra 143 firms and 37 individuals in Iran, after the publication last month of a US-sponsored report on Tehran’s nuclear program by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
GOP presidential hopeful, Rep. Ron Paul, has claimed that the latest IAEA report has provided NO evidence that Iran has diverted enriched uranium towards building a nuclear weapon.