Iran Warns Trump's Oil Ban Is 'Self Harm'

India’s oil imports from Iran surged after US sanctions were lifted in 2015

Looming U.S. sanctions on Iranian crude exports, force majeure in Libya and unplanned pipeline outages in Nigeria have been clouding the supply outlook despite rising output by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries.

The price for Brent crude oil, the global benchmark for the price of oil, was up 1.32 percent as of 9:15 a.m. EDT to $78.32 per barrel. US crude futures CLc1 were up 19 cents at $74.33 a barrel, within sight of Tuesday's 3-1/2-year high above $75 a barrel.

USA light crude jumped $1.17 to US$75.11 a barrel, its highest since November 2014. On Wednesday he tweeted that OPEC is "doing little to help, " adding that, "if anything, they are driving prices higher". His latest was a reminder that the United States defends many OPEC members for "very little" money.

NAN reports that on Twitter, Trump called on OPEC countries, fresh from a meeting in which they chose to raise oil output by an indeterminate amount, to do more to bring down crude prices. "REDUCE PRICING NOW!" Trump wrote on Twitter.

However, summer months in the US usually lead to increased demand for oil, boosting the price of gasoline in a midterm election year.

OPEC together with a group of non-OPEC producers led by Russian Federation started to withhold output in 2017 to prop up the market.

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"A key driver of the rise in prices has been the OPEC-Russia deal to cut oil output, compounded by collapsing Venezuelan production and the USA decision to end the Iran deal", National Australia Bank (NAB) said in its July outlook.

OPEC and Russian Federation announced in June they were willing to raise output to address concerns of emerging supply shortages due to unplanned disruptions from Venezuela to Libya, and likely also to replace a potential fall in Iranian supplies due to United States sanctions.

Outside North America, looming USA sanctions against major oil exporter Iran were the focus of attention.

"If they want to stop Iranian oil exports, we will not allow any oil shipment to pass through the Strait of Hormuz", Ismail Kowsari, an Iranian Revolutionary Guards commander, told Iran's Young Journalists Club, Reuters reported.

Trump also tweeted on the topic two weeks ago saying he hoped OPEC would increase production in an effort to keep prices down.

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