Reuters: Iran, locked in a row with Washington over its nuclear work, is aiming to boost oil export earnings in non-U.S. dollar currencies to 80 percent by the end of next month, an Iranian oil official said on Tuesday. TEHRAN, Sept 25 (Reuters) – Iran, locked in a row with Washington over its nuclear work, is aiming to boost oil export earnings in non-U.S. dollar currencies to 80 percent by the end of next month, an Iranian oil official said on Tuesday.
A switch in payment by Nippon Oil and other Japanese refiners to yen has already pushed the Islamic Republic’s non-U.S. dollar income to more than 70 percent.
“With the arrangements we’ve made with our Asian customers, hopefully by the end of October we will have around 80 percent of our export revenue in currencies other than the dollar,” Hojjatollah Ghanimifard, international affairs director of the state-owned National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) told Reuters.
For nearly two years, the world’s fourth-biggest oil exporter has been reducing its exposure to the dollar, saying the weak U.S. currency is eroding its purchasing power.
In July, the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) made an official request to customers in Japan, which imports more than 300,000 barrels per day (bpd) of Iranian crude, to pay in yen.
Mohammad Ali Khatibi, Deputy Director of International Affairs at the state oil company, earlier on Tuesday told the oil ministry’s official website SHANA that some Japanese refiners have asked for more time to honour Tehran’s request.
“Currently, over 70 percent of Iran’s crude exports are based on euro and yen instead of dollar,” said Khatibi.
“Nippon Oil is not the only Japanese refinery which has replaced dollar with yen, but also there are some other refineries that have started this replacement,” Khatibi said.
“Others called for one or two months to do that.”
Before Japan made the switch, just short of 70 percent of Iran’s oil income was in non-U.S. dollar currencies.
Iran’s total crude oil exports are around 2.3 million bpd. (Additional reporting by Peg Mackey in London)