Iran said it will accept gold as payment for its oil exports in response to sanctions by the U.S. and the European Union which made it difficult, if not impossible, for foreign oil buyers to use Iranian banks for payments.
The sanctions have been imposed in order to pressure the Iranian regime to give up its nuclear power program.
The IRNA state-controlled news agency reported that the governor of the Islamic Republic’s bank, Mahmoud Bahmani, said: In its trade transactions with other countries, Iran does not limit itself to the U.S. dollar, and the country can pay using its own currency. If a country should so choose, it can pay in gold and we would accept that without any reservation.
Crude oil is predominantly priced and traded in U.S. dollars, although Iran has already accepted payments in other currencies, including Indian Rupees.
Meanwhile, the EU’s ban on purchasing Iranian oil will become effective on July 1 and will apply to all companies in all member state. That removal of EU buyers will likely place a severe crimp of Iran’s finances, given that about one-fifth of Persian oil exports go to EU states.
Japan and Korea have already announced that they will reduce their dependence on Iranian oil imports.
Some of these losses may be compensated by Iran’s two largest oil buyers, China and India, both of whom declared they will not abide by the US/EU sanctions against Iranian crude.
BBC reported that the Noor Islamic Bank of Dubai has ceased all relationships with Iranian financial entities in honor of Washington’s strict sanctions against Iranian banks.
Reuters reported that as a result of sanctions and oil export cuts, the value of Iran’s currency, the rial, has been plunging, making everything more expensive for the average Iranian to buy.