Iran’s Zanganeh Says Hard to Predict Oil Prices as Demand Unclear – Radio

Bijan Zanganeh. REUTERS

DUBAI, May 25 (Reuters) Iran‘s oil minister said on Monday it was difficult to forecast crude prices amid uncertainties over prospects for demand, Iranian state radio reported.

“No one can predict crude prices and now the demand is vague,” Bijan Zanganeh told state radio.

Oil prices rose on Monday, reversing earlier losses, as countries around the world continued to ease lockdown measures imposed to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

Amid quiet trading, with financial centres Singapore, London and New York all closed for holidays, Brent was up 11 cents, or 0.3%, at $35.24 a barrel by 0855 GMT. U.S. oil had gained 36 cents, or 1.1%, at $33.61 a barrel. “It is not clear when the world economy will recover and when the demand will return to normal. The world’s largest economies are growing negatively, reducing demand for petroleum products and, consequently, crude oil,” Zanganeh said.

Zanganeh also said Turkey had “not welcomed” Iran‘s offer to repair a natural gas pipeline inside Turkey, which carries around 10 billion cubic meters of Iranian gas to Turkey annually. The pipeline was damaged by a blast in March and halted Tehran’s natural gas flow to Turkey.

“Because of the explosion our gas exports to this country have been cut off. Although it takes not more than a few days to repair the pipeline, the Turkish side has not yet repaired it,” Zanganeh said.

(Writing by Parisa Hafezi; Editing by Mark Potter)