Iran's crude oil exports have risen in April following softer sales last month, helped by a framework nuclear agreement between Tehran and world powers and the possibility that Western sanctions could be lifted soon.
Iran, once OPEC's second-largest producer after Saudi Arabia, hopes to boost crude exports by as much as 1 million barrels per day (bpd) if Tehran and six major powers finalise a nuclear agreement by a June 30 deadline. The sides reached a framework accord on March 31.
"The 'agreed framework' has already led to an increase in Iranian oil exports as buyers take advantage of a more lax sanctions enforcement environment," said Mark Dubowitz of Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), a U.S.-based think tank.
"While sanctions are still in effect and most major banks are not active, there is nevertheless already a tacit acceptance that oil exports from Iran will pick up," said Dubowitz of the FDD, which advocates maintaining economic sanctions to enforce any nuclear deal with Iran.
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