India imports 12% of its national oil consumption from the Islamic Republic. Currently India owes Iran $8 billion in back payments. Tehran has warned New Delhi that if the later failed to pay at least 50% of the amount it owes to Iran – Tehran will be forced to stop oil supply to India.
Indian Communist Party (CPI) general secretary Parakash Karat has claimed in an article published in the latest edition of party organ People’s Democracy that Indian government succumbed to US pressure to curtail its trading and commercial links with Iran. Karat said India was abiding by not just the UNSC sanctions but also the “illegal and unilateral” coercive measures imposed by the US and the EU. Consequently, the Reserve Bank of India last December disallowed all trade-related payments to Iran through the Asian Clearing Union. This mechanism had been being used for a long time to make payments to Iran. Once this was stopped, the problem arose of how to make the payments.
According to the Journal of Energy Security, Islamic Republic has world’s fourth-largest reserve of oil and second-largest reserve of gas after Russia. Iran’s geographic proximity makes it very attractive economic supplier for India’s large and growing energy demand. The India-Iran bilateral ties in the energy field were going smoothly until US-Israel blackmailed New Delhi by relaxing sanction on later’s nuclear program and putting political pressure on Dr. Manmohan Singh’s government via Hindutva BJP and other anti-Muslim groups which has very close relation with Tel Aviv. India’s famous author and peace activist, Arundhati Roy, has compared her country with Israel as an anti-Muslim colonial power.
India’s past history in India-Iran oil trade has convinced Tehran that India cannot be taken as a reliable customer in energy sector. For example, it was India which floated the idea of building a gas pipeline between Iran and India through Pakistan (IPI) in the 1980s. The proposed pipeline from the giant South Pars gasfield in Persian Gulf with 1,036 km passing through Pakistani territory will be able to carry 90 million standard cubic meter per day of gas at the cost of $7 billion. For over a decade, India has been delaying the project on lame excuses of Iran’s price formula (between $30-$70 range based on Japanese Crude Cocktail price) and the transporation tariff cost demanded by Islamabad.
From the very begining, US-Israel have been against the IPI project for two reasons. They wanted the TAPI pipeline, and wanted the Islamic Republic outside the pipeline grid. Despite Washington’s threats, last year, Pakistan signed the contract with Iran for the construction of a 900-kilometre-long gas pipeline, from Asalooyeh in Southern Iran and Iranshahr near the border with Pakistan which will transport 750 million cubic feet a day of gas from Iran to Pakistan for the next 25 years to generate 4,000 MW of electricity.
India doesn’t have the gutts to defy the US-Israel axis of evil.
China, last year, showed its willingness to join the venture if India bows out. Islamabad on its part will prefer China, its reliable friend for over five decades, over India, an enemy Islamabad fought three major wars with and which with the help of US-Israel broke-up Pakistan into Bangladesh.
“For both Iran and Pakistan the pipeline project would be highly beneficial. Iran sees in the pipeline not only an economic lifeline at a time when the US and its European allies are trying to weaken it economically but also an opportunity, should the pipeline be extended to either India or China, to create an unbreakable long term political and economic dependence of billions of Chinese and Indian customers on its gas. Pakistan, for its part, views the pipeline as the solution to its energy security challenge. Pakistan’s domestic gas production is falling and its import dependence is growing by leaps and bounds. By connecting itself with the world’s second largest gas reserve, Pakistan would guarantee reliable supply for decades to come. If the pipeline were to be extended to India it could also be an instrument for stability in the often tense Pakistan-India relations. Under any scenario of pipeline expansion which makes Pakistan a transit state Islamabad stands to gain from transit fees hundreds of millions of dollars every year,” wrote Gal Luft in the Journal of Energy Security, June 18, 2009.
The US-Israel sponsored UNSC resolution 1929 mainly targeted Iran’s oil industry which western ZOGs believe Iran’s soft belly as 50% of Iran’s foreign exchange earnings come from it. With all those huge oil and gas reserves – Tehran still imports 20-25% of it refined oil. In order to make the country self-sufficient in energy, Ahmadinejad has ordered construction of seven new refineries and upgrading of the existing refineries. According to the Economic Intelligence Unit report released in April 2011 – Iran gasoline production will climb to 72 million liters per day by 2012. The report added that Iran gasoline production will yield a surplus of about 20 million liters per day for export once the country reaches production capacity of 42 million liters per day in 2012.
India is looking toward Saudi Arabia as Iranian replacement. However, the import of Saudi oil via tankers has a problem. Saudi oil supply certainly will be disrupted if US-Israeli war comes to Iran by Tehran’s blockade of Strait of Hormuz.
Ziocons propaganda outlet, Bloomberg’ has reported that US-EU sanctions while hurting Western countries and India, had made both China and Russia the big winners in Iranian energy sector. There are indications that US-Israel-EU plan to cripple Iranian economy has totally failed. “We have seen a real quick drop-off in imports into Iran. They are down significantly, by over half, from where they were a few months ago,” said Jamie Webster, a researcher at PFC Energy, a Washington-based consulting firm.
US behind Iran-India trade stand-off | Rehmat's World