EU negotiates with several countries on alternatives to Iran’s oil
Azerbaijan, Baku, March 14 / Trend V. Zhavoronkova/
The European Union holds the negotiations with a number of countries on alternative oil supplies for the case of possible oil shortage after imposing embargo on Iranian oil, a source in the European Commission told Trend on Wednesday.
"We are in contact with a couple of possible alternative suppliers such as Norway, Algeria and Russia," the source said.
The EU formally imposed an oil embargo on Iran and agreed to a freeze on the assets of the Iranian Central Bank on January 23, but existing contracts will be honored until July 1.
"The Commission is considering where alternative supplies could come from including Saudi Arabia but not exclusively. The EU is well stocked with oil and petroleum products to face a potential disruption of supplies," the source said.
The source added that current stocks amount to 136 million tons [oil and petroleum products], equivalent to 120 days of consumption or 4.5 years of EU imports from Iran.
The continuity of crude oil and petroleum product supplies to European consumers should not be immediately affected, even in case of an abrupt halt of all imports from Iran, he added.
"The Commission is aware that EU companies are already looking into alternatives and switching suppliers - some Member States have already stopped purchasing crude oil from Iran, others member states are reducing their purchases," the sources said.