India is still in talks with the
United States to extend Iranian oil sanctions waiver that would allow the South Asian country to import Iranian
oil without any repercussions. India was granted a six-month waiver to purchase
oil from Iran after US sanctions on Iran went into effect in November 2018
according to reports in the Iranian Media.
are in negotiations with the United States government to extend a waiver beyond
“We are engaging
with the US. We have continued to engage with the US administration. The waiver
lapses on May 4; let us wait and see what happens. But the important thing is,
we will continue our engagement with the US to see if we are taking care of our
energy security,” External affairs ministry spokesperson said last week.
In November, the US
granted a six-month waiver to India, China, Greece, Italy, Taiwan, Japan,
Turkey and South Korea to continue importing oil from Iran, as President Trump
had the US unilaterally withdraw from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal and re-imposed
sanctions on the country.
India, the world’s
third largest oil consumer, meets more than 80 percent of its oil needs through
imports. Iran is India’s third largest supplier, after Iraq and Saudi Arabia,
and meets about 10 percent of India’s total need.
“India used to
import about 9.4 percent of its crude from Iran. We have been gradually
replacing that with Saudi crude and even US shale oil. However, price
differentials are huge, especially as crude prices are firming up,” Indian
officials involved in the negotiations were quoted in the media.“We will bring
down our imports from Iran further, but for the time being, we need an extended
The volume of trade
between Iran and India stands between 10 to 13 billion US Dollars. Iran also
plays an important role in India’s connectivity to Afghanistan via the Chabahar
port along the Coastline of Iran.
The United States
has pressured countries to reduce oil imports from Iran, threatening economic
repercussions if they do not. This presents a problem for India, which is the
second-largest Iranian oil buyer after China. It has limited India’s monthly
purchases from Iran to 1.25 million tons, or 15 million tons per year (300,000
barrels per day).