Energy, trade on menu as Iran foreign minister meets Sushma Swaraj

Energy, trade on menu as Iran foreign minister meets Sushma Swaraj

Energy, trade on menu as Iran foreign minister meets Sushma Swaraj

India today said it will continue trading with Iran and Venezuela despite USA sanctions against the two countries, asserting that it only recognises United Nations restrictions.

Seemingly unmindful of United States threats to re-impose sanctions on Tehran following the U.S. pulling out of the 2015 nuclear deal, India and Iran on Monday discussed cooperation in areas decided during a visit by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in February.

Iran is India's third largest oil supplier.

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif's plane touched down in New Delhi on Monday, with a delegation of political and economic officials tagging along. India and Iran already have an Indian Rupee (IR) mechanism which has worked well during the previous sanctions era. "It is one country which does not believe in rule of law and I would just say one thing to their answer "look who's talking", Swaraj asserted.

She made the remarks while responding to a question on whether USA sanctions against Iran and Venezuela will hit India's oil imports from the two countries.

The US Treasury designated three Iranian entities and six individuals on Wednesday for committing human rights abuses and censorship, in what is the sixth round of sanctions since President Donald Trump left the nuclear deal on May 8.

Oil hits multi-week lows on fears of growing supplies
WTI for July delivery fell as much as 3.1% to $65.80/bbl and traded at $66.95 on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia would not like the prices to jump from the current $75-$80 to $100, he said .

Handling other allegations from Congress, Sushma Swaraj, on Pakistan, said: "It is because of the success of India's foreign policy that Pakistan has been sidelined in worldwide arena".

According to the External Affairs Ministry, India-Iran bilateral trade during the 2016-17 fiscal was $12.89 billion.

Although the figures reduced in 2017, India has committed to increasing its offtake of oil from Iran this year, after President Hassan Rouhani and Prime Minister Modi held talks in Delhi in February.

India has pledged to invest more than $500 million to develop the strategically important Chabahar Port, which is critical to India's outreach to Afghanistan and wider Central Asia. Citing Mac Thornberry, chairman of US House Armed Services Committee, a report said that the concerns have been conveyed to different levels in the Indian establishment.

"Total has 60 days to negotiate with the US administration while the French government can also use these 60 days to negotiate with the USA administration so that Total can stay in Iran", Zanganeh said in a statement, according to The Financial Times.

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