Iran closes oil wells in flood-hit Khuzestan province, output drops

Authorities ordered tens of thousands of residents of the southwestern Iranian city of Ahvaz to evacuate immediately as floodwaters entered the capital of oil-rich Khuzestan province, state television reported. (File/AFP)
Updated 17 April 2019

Iran closes oil wells in flood-hit Khuzestan province, output drops

  • Iran’s worst flooding in 70 years, which started on March 19, has killed at least 76 people
  • “The oil production of the field has dropped between 15,000 to 20,000 barrels per day,” an official said

DUBAI: Iran has shut around a dozen oil wells in its oil-rich southwestern Khuzestan province because of massive floods, the semi-official Mehr news agency reported on Wednesday, leading to a drop of up to 20,000 barrels per day in crude production.
Iran’s worst flooding in 70 years, which started on March 19, has killed at least 76 people, forced more than 220,000 into emergency shelters and caused an estimated $2.5 billion in damage to roads, bridges, homes and farmland.
“There are no oil leaks at the Hoor Al-Azim wetland area. We have closed 10 to 12 oil wells there as a precautionary measure to prevent any environmental damages,” Mehr quoted Touraj Dehghani, the head of Iran’s Petroleum Engineering and Development Company (PEDEC), as saying.
“The oil production of the field has dropped between 15,000 to 20,000 barrels per day.”
Iranian media on Friday reported oil output had been reduced in Khuzestan, home to the Azadegan and Yadavaran oilfields.
Iranian authorities have said the floods have not affected crude exports.
The United States reimposed sanctions on Iran in November after pulling out of a 2015 nuclear accord between Tehran and six world powers. The sanctions have already halved Iranian oil exports.
US President Donald Trump eventually aims to halt Iranian oil exports, choking off Tehran’s main source of revenue. Washington is pressuring Iran to curtail its nuclear program and stop backing militant groups across the Middle East.


Huawei given 90 days to buy from US suppliers

Trader Tommy Kalikas works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Monday, Aug. 19, 2019. (AP)
Updated 20 August 2019

Huawei given 90 days to buy from US suppliers

  • Shortly after blacklisting the company in May, the Commerce Department initially allowed Huawei to purchase some American-made goods in a move aimed at minimizing disruption for its customers

WASHINGTON: US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said Monday the US government will extend a reprieve given to Huawei Technologies that permits the Chinese firm to buy supplies from US companies so that it can service existing customers, even as nearly 50 of its units were being added to a US economic blacklist.
The “temporary general license,” due to expire on Monday, will be extended for Huawei for 90 days, he told Fox Business Network Monday, confirming an expected decision first reported Friday by Reuters. He also said he was adding 46 Huawei affiliates to the Entity List, raising the total number to more than 100 Huawei entities that are covered by the restrictions.
Ross said the extension was to aid US customers, many of which operate networks in rural America.
“We’re giving them a little more time to wean themselves off,” Ross said.
Shortly after blacklisting the company in May, the Commerce Department initially allowed Huawei to purchase some American-made goods in a move aimed at minimizing disruption for its customers.
The extension, through Nov. 19, renews an agreement continuing the Chinese company’s ability to maintain existing telecommunications networks and provide software updates to Huawei handsets.
Asked what will happen in November to US companies, Ross said: “Everybody has had plenty of notice of it, there have been plenty of discussions with the president.”
When the Commerce Department blocked Huawei from buying US goods earlier this year, it was seen as a major escalation in the Sino-US trade war.
The US government blacklisted Huawei, alleging the Chinese company is involved in activities contrary to national security or foreign policy interests.

BACKGROUND

The US blacklisted Huawei, alleging the Chinese company was involved in activities contrary to national security or foreign policy interests.

As an example, the blacklisting order cited a pending federal criminal case concerning allegations Huawei violated US sanctions against Iran. Huawei has pleaded not guilty in the case.

The order noted that the indictment also accused Huawei of “deceptive and obstructive acts.”
At the same time the US says Huawei’s smartphones and network equipment could be used by China to spy on Americans, allegations the company has repeatedly denied.
Huawei, the world’s largest telecommunications equipment maker, is still prohibited from buying American parts and components to manufacture new products without additional special licenses.
Many Huawei suppliers have requested the special licenses to sell to the firm. Ross told reporters late last month he had received more than 50 applications, and that he expected to receive more. He said on Monday that there were no “specific licenses being granted for anything.”