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Editor in chief: Angelo Scorza
11/02/19 10:22

Following USA sanctions oil import in Italy from Iran dropped to zero

Despite the temporary lifting, data reported by Unione Petrolifera confirmed the country stopped buying crude oil from Teheran, of which they used to be the major European buyer

The temporary lifting from latest US sanctions against Teheran definitely didn't assuage Italy, which – since the new US embargo was enforced – stopped importing oil from Iran, of which they  used to be the leading importer in Europe.

Since last December 5th, when the new sanctions demanded by US President Donald Trump, against Iran, were enforced, despite Italy and 7 other countries (China, India, South Corea, Japan, Greece, Taiwan and Turkey) were granted an exemption, exclusively regarding oil import and for 6 months,  Italian importers determined not to take this opportunity.

Meanwhile Iran Ministry of Petroleum, Bijan Zanganeh, was particularly disappointed by Italy and Greece' decision.

The two countries -. illustrated Zanganeh - “were lifted from the enforced US sanctions, however they determined not to buy Iranian oil.

As recently confirmed by Unione Petrolifera, no European country is currently importing oil from Iran, except for Turkey.

From January to October last year Italian oil purchase from Iran ranged from 361,000 tons (in September) to 861,000 tons (in August), last November (when sanctions were enforced) and December volumes went down to zero.

In 2018, Italy imported overall 6 million tons  oil from Iran, a substantial quantity (9.7% out of the whole oil import), which shows 35.3 % drop versus last year's volumes.

Italy has always been a remarkable customer for Teheran, in 2017 the country imported 10 million tons Iranian oil, 14% of the total, turning the country into the second supplier after Azerbaijan (18.7% of the total).

In 2018, Iran was ranked 5th: last year Italy imported overall 62 million tons oil, - 6.5% versus 2017.

Azerbaijan is still leading the ranking, reaching 19% of the total, followed by Iraq (14.9%), Saudi Arabia (11.7%), Lybia (10.1%) and Iran (9.7%).

For this reason Italy determined not to exploit the 6 months granted by the USA and stopped importing Iranian oil soon after the new embargo was enforced.

Francesco Bottino

TAG : Commodities