Reuters: European refiners winding down purchases of Iranian oil

|By:, SA News Editor

European refiners are winding down oil purchases from Iran in the wake of U.S. sanctions, Reuters reports, citing company and trading sources.

Refiners including France's Total (NYSE:TOT), Italy's Eni (NYSE:E) and Spain's Repsol (OTCQX:REPYF, OTCQX:REPYY) are preparing to halt purchases of Iranian oil once sanctions bite, according to the report; these refiners account for most of Europe’s purchases of Iranian crude, which represent ~20% of the country’s oil exports.

TOT, Europe’s largest refiner, reportedly does not intend to request a waiver to continue crude oil trading with Iran after Nov. 4.

Although European governments have not followed the U.S. by creating new sanctions, banks, insurers and shippers gradually are severing ties with Iran; as a source says at Italy's Saras, which operates a 300K bbl/day refinery in Sardinia, "We cannot defy the United States."

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