The Strategist

US continues to help South Korea find alternatives to Iranian oil

04/23/2019 - 16:32

The United States will continue to assist South Korea in finding an alternative to importing Iranian oil, Francis Fannon, United States Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources, said in an interview to Yonhap.

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Public Domain Pictures
"I think the alliance between the USA and South Korea is definitely strong. (...) I can say that the ongoing discussions to help South Korea, these discussions that have been going on for a year, they continue because the alliance (South Korea and the US) is critical in many areas ...", said Fannon.

This statement was made by United States Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources after US President Donald Trump decided on Monday not to extend measures to exclude a number of countries from oil sanctions against Iran.

Since May 2, the United States is not expected to provide exemptions to countries that currently import Iranian oil. In this case, they will not be given any transitional period, that is, they will no longer be able to buy Iranian oil from that date on. Among the countries that were not previously affected by anti-Iranian oil sanctions are China, India, Japan, South Korea and Turkey.

According to Fannon, the decision was made after a year of consultations with South Korea and other importing countries.

South Korea relies heavily on Iranian condensate for petrochemical production.

Fannon stressed that volumes of oil and condensates are growing on the market to meet global needs. As for specific alternative sources, South Korean companies will decide this, he said.