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US 'confident energy markets will remain stable' after Iran sanctions: State Department official

Washington DC — The US is confident the oil market will have sufficient supply to avoid price spikes once sanctions on Iran's oil buyers snap back in three weeks, a top State Department official said Monday ahead of talks with EU officials.

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"We are confident that energy markets will remain stable," said Brian Hook, head of the State Department's Iran action group. "We are seeing a well-supplied and balanced oil market right now. We should focus on these fundamentals and not be distracted by the emotional and unbalanced claims coming from Tehran."

"We are going to continue to coordinate very closely with oil producers," Hook said. "The US is doing its part to maintain supply."

Hook said rising US crude exports are available to replace falling Iranian exports.

Platts Analytics expects Iranian crude and condensate exports to fall to 1.1 million b/d by October loadings and to 800,000 b/d by Q4 2019, from 2.91 million b/d in April.

Hook met Friday with Indian officials but declined to comment Monday on whether the countries had reached any deal for oil sanctions relief.

India's oil minister said last week that two companies have made nominations to import Iranian oil in November despite the threat of sanctions.

--Meghan Gordon, meghan.gordon@spglobal.com

--Edited by Jonathan Fox, jonathan.fox@spglobal.com