UAE assures India to cover shortfall in oil supplies after US sanctions on Iran: Envoy

PTI, Jun 24, 2019, 4:35 PM IST

New Delhi: The UAE has assured India that it will cover any shortfall in oil supplies following the US sanctions on Iran, United Arab Emirates Ambassador to India Ahmed Al Banna said Monday.

India has expressed concern over developments in the Strait of Hormuz impacting oil prices and sought OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia’s active role in keeping rates at reasonable levels.

This comes after tensions ran high in the region after US President Donald Trump approved and then later called off military strikes against Tehran following shooting down of an American Navy drone over the strait by Iranian forces.

“UAE has promised and assured India that they will cover any shortage of oil that it might face because of the situation (US sanctions on Iran). It has been done in the past and we commit to the Government of India the same thing now,” he said.

India stopped importing oil from Iran after American waivers granted to eight buyers expired in May this year.

Besides, Al Banna said India and the UAE are to hold talks within the next couple of months on revising a 2007 air services pact and four sectoral agreements that will allow an increase in the number of flights between the two countries, which currently stands at 1,068 a week.

“I had a meeting with the Minister of Civil Aviation and other officials and I think there is an understanding that both sides will meet soon to visit the agreement and four sectoral agreements and reach a final understanding on the capacity,” the Ambassador said.

Al Banna said the four sectoral agreements under the air services pact will be revisited. He expressed hope that negotiations for revisiting the pacts will begin in a couple of months.

He was speaking on the sidelines of an event organised by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce on the first-ever Dubai start-up hub road show to India.

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