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Iran's Vice President Says US Failed to Stop Iranian Oil Exports

© AP Photo / Vahid Salemi, File / In this Dec. 22, 2014 file photo, an Iranian oil worker makes his way through Tehran's oil refinery south of the capital Tehran, Iran.
In this Dec. 22, 2014 file photo, an Iranian oil worker makes his way through Tehran's oil refinery south of the capital Tehran, Iran. - Sputnik International
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TEHRAN (Sputnik) - The United States has failed to stop the Iranian oil exports despite the intention to bring it to zero, First Vice President of Iran Eshaq Jahangiri said on Sunday.

"Oil, as the main source of income for Iran, has been under severe sanctions. Under the previous sanctions, the maximum amount of oil exports for Iran was set at one million barrels and then we were selling up to 900,000 barrels of oil. Now they [Washington] said that Iran’s oil exports should be brought to zero, and, fortunately, they failed to achieve this", Jahangiri said in a statement.

The remarks came in the light of measures developed by the Iranian authorities aimed at moving away from oil as the country's main source of income. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has emphasized that US sanctions would have less effect if Tehran had less dependence on this source of income. In mid-February, Rouhani said that Tehran for the first time in its history stopped focusing on oil.

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In addition, Tehran is making attempts to find new routes for oil exports, primarily bypassing the key energy route — the Strait of Hormuz — since the instability in this area may endanger oil deliveries from the entire region.

In 2018, Tehran did not rule out a possibility of closure of the Strait of Hormuz for other states if Iran was unable to export oil as a result of the US sanctions. The Iranian military later announced the absence of such plans.

Iran is currently constructing a pipeline from the Goureh oil terminal to the port of Jask, which will allow transporting up to 1 million barrels of oil per day from the eastern part of the Persian Gulf directly to the port in the Gulf of Oman, bypassing the Strait of Hormuz. The project is planned to be completed in the first quarter of 2021.

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