U.S. Imposes Sanctions on Iranʼs Oil Sector

October 26, 2020

Author: 

Pranshu Verma and Farnaz Fassihi

Publication: 

The New York Times

Related Country: 

  • Venezuela

Using counterterrorism authorities, the United States sanctioned the Iranian Petroleum Ministry, the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), and a NIOC subsidiary that manages Iran's oil tankers. The sanctions also targeted a number of front companies, subsidiaries, and individuals associated with these entities, as well as Iranian Oil Minister Bijan N. Zanganeh, and four people involved in transporting Iranian gasoline to Venezuela. U.S. officials accuse these entities of providing financial support to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). While many of the companies and individuals had previously been sanctioned under different authorities, the new sanctions explicitly link Iran's petroleum sector to terrorism and the IRGC. Analysts speculate that such sanctions carry more political and symbolic weight and would be more difficult to unwind in the future.