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Iran needs three-plus months to return oil to 2015 JCPOA-level market level: Ghasemi

Tehran — Iran needs at least three months to flow back its crude in the global oil market as much as it was under the 2015 nuclear deal, former oil minister Rostam Ghasemi said April 21.

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"The issue of oil is a complicated one," Ghasemi, who is involved in Iran's current oil sales, said on state television. "It will not be possible in one day. It will definitely take its time to return to our production. Though the oil ministry has this capability to quickly return to the production. But at least it takes a three-month period, at least, for us to return to our exports," he said when asked how long it would take for Iran to verify the oil sanctions have been lifted.

In efforts to revive the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action nuclear deal, Iran is in intensive talks with EU and other signatories to the 2015 deal in Vienna. Iran has controversially expanded its nuclear program in response to the US withdrawal from the JCPOA and a maximum pressure aimed at zeroing the OPEC member's crude trade.

President Hassan Rouhani gave an update April 21 in a televised speech of the Vienna talks progress.

"When they ask us if the sanctions have been lifted, we will ask the central bank, oil ministry, the road ministry," Rouhani said. "[When] everyone says the sanctions have been lifted, then we announce 'yes, the sanctions have been lifted.' Yesterday, we comprehensively discussed the verification. How we want to do the verification and how long it will take, it will not be that complicated in my view if properly programmed beforehand, with complete cooperation and good will... it can be announced in a not very long period."

Ghasemi, Iran's oil minister from 2011-2013, has announced he would run in the upcoming presidential elections in June. In a recent interview with the semi-official Tasnim news agency, he said he was asked to help with selling the country's oil.