The current stance differs drastically from the administration's position just four months ago, when Trump was pressuring his administration to fully enforce US sanctions on Iran. The Trump administration is considering waivers on sanctions, a USA government official said on Friday.
Indian refiners are concerned about the loss of Iranian crude once United States sanctions start and are seeking exemptions. The industry has been worrying that an entirely effective ban on Iranian oil exports would strain supplies. "Iran's oil can not be replaced by Saudi Arabia".
"Refiners have placed November nominations to lift 1.25 million tonnes (about 9 million barrels) of oil from Iran", one of the sources said.
US sanctions will target Iran's crude oil exports from November 4, and Washington has been putting pressure on governments and companies worldwide to cut their imports to zero.
Pradhan said he had urged Saudi Arabia's oil minister to keep in mind the interests of oil consuming countries when it came to higher prices.
-Chinese trade war could slow down economic growth and hit oil demand also weighed on the market, traders in Asia said.
U.S. sanctions against Iran will kick in from 4 November, which will block payment routes.
The U.S.is imposing the sanctions because Iran has reneged on a 2015 nuclear deal-a point on which other major powers disagree-and because it wants Iranian forces to pull out of Syria and Iraq. Prices are up six cents more than a month ago and 41 cents more than this time past year. The Trump administration is considering waivers on sanctions for countries that are reducing their imports.
"Instead they're talking about 'sufficient pressure, ' which is their language for allowing banks to keep Iran connected to the global financial system, including through SWIFT or with oil waivers", the source said, referring to new efforts by officials in the Treasury Department and European allies to keep Iran connected to the premier worldwide banking system.
UCO Bank had in the previous round of sanctions handled rupee payments. "This time Europe is not working with the USA, so we intend to evolve a mechanism".
Although countries like Turkey, Russia, and China have indicated they will go ahead with their oil trade with Iran, the European Union will probably accede in a large measure, given the exposure of their companies to the US banking system.
Iran was exporting between 2.5 and 2.7 million bpd in April before the U.S. announced the return of sanctions.
There are concerns a shortfall in Iran's oil production could prompt global oil supply to fall and prices to rise.
The best value zone for the November WTI crude oil market is $72.35 to $71.27.