President Trump’s Decision Aims to Strangle Iran, Reduce Oil Exports to Zero
President Donald Trump has decided the United States will not reissue Significant Reduction Exceptions (SREs) for existing importers of Iranian oil. The move aims to reduce the nation’s oil exports to zero and targets the regime’s number one source of revenue.
“The United States, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, three of the world’s great energy producers, along with our friends and allies, are committed to ensuring that global oil markets remain adequately supplied,” the White House said in a statement. “We have agreed to take timely action to assure that global demand is met as all Iranian oil is removed from the market.”
Even with SREs, which exempts eight nations from U.S. sanctions, the Trump Administration has reduced Iran’s oil exports to historic lows. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Monday the U.S. is “dramatically accelerating our pressure campaign” when SREs expire in early May.
“We stand by our allies and partners as they transition away from Iranian crude to other alternatives,” Secretary Pompeo said at a press conference.
The State Department echoed the White House on steps taken to ease the transition and limit price volatility within global markets.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) recently noted the U.S. became the world’s largest oil producer in 2018, and will topple Saudi Arabia as the largest exporter in 2019. By early 2019, the U.S. exported a record 3.6 million barrels per day of crude oil.
“This, in addition to increasing U.S. production, underscores our confidence that energy markets will remain well supplied,” Secretary Pompeo said.
He stated the timing of the decision was “calibrated” to meet U.S. national security objectives while “maintaining well supplied global oil markets.”
“Today’s announcement builds on the already significant successes of our pressure campaign,” he added. “We will continue to apply maximum pressure on the Iranian regime until its leaders change their destructive behavior, respect the rights of the Iranian people, and return to the negotiating table.