Published:  12:26 AM, 17 May 2018

Iran, Venezuela weighing on oil market: IEA

Global oil supplies could be hit by the decision by the US to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal, and also by falling production in crisis-hit Venezuela, the IEA said on Wednesday.

The decision by US President Donald Trump to withdraw from the Iran deal "has switched the focus of oil market analysis from the fundamentals to geopolitics," the International Energy Agency wrote in its regular monthly report. 

On May 8, Trump announced he would pull the US out of a 2015 pact -- agreed by Britain, China, Germany, Russia and the Barack Obama administration -- that opened up Tehran's atomic programme in return for an easing of sanctions. Oil prices -- which had already rising on the back of steady demand growth and a landmark deal by oil producing countries, both inside and outside the OPEC cartel, to lower output -- have since surged above $77 per barrel, the IEA said.

"In these early days, there is understandable uncertainty about (the) potential impact on Iran's oil exports" from the US move, it said. When sanctions were imposed in 2012, Iranian exports fell by about 1.2 million barrels per day, the organisation said

"It is too soon to say what will happen this time, but we should examine whether other producers could step in to ensure an orderly flow of oil to the market and offset a disruption to Iranian exports."

-AFP, Paris

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