Mohammad Baqer Nobakht, head of the Program and Budget Organization of the Iranian regime, said in December 2019: “For 2020, the daily export of one million barrels of oil at the rate of $50 barrels per day (BPD) has been predicted.”
on May 14 Reuters reported that Iran’s oil “exports averaged 70,000 barrels per day in April, down from 287,000 BPD in March, according to Kepler, which tracks the flows.”
During the Coronavirus Task Force meeting on May 15, 2020, the Iranian regime’s President Hassan Rouhani confirmed a Reuters report stating Iran’s oil exports have dropped to 70,000 barrels per day in April.
Rouhani said: “If we rely solely on the oil export, we will have problems.” This means that the regime has given up on oil revenues. The regime had partially based the 2020 budget on exporting one million barrels of oil per day at $50 a barrel. The regime had hoped for a total of $18 billion in oil revenue. But given the sudden drop in oil prices during the coronavirus pandemic, there is no chance that the regime can amass that revenue, even if it reaches its desired volume of exports. In the best-case scenario, the regime will only get $250 million in a year, one-seventieth of what it had anticipated. Now the question is, how does the regime want to fill this gap and continue its economic life?
Rouhani emphasized: “In the country, we need to produce goods, export them and the currency resulting from exports, and we all need to fulfill the slogan of Surge in Production put forward by the Supreme Leader for this year.”
“US economic sanctions and the zeroing of Iran’s oil exports to Turkey are among the leading causes of the recession,” the state-run daily Etemad reported on May 17, 2020.
Alarm to reduce oil exports
IRNA state-run news agency January 18, 2019: “Chinese state-owned companies have stopped buying oil from Iran.”
Vatan-e-Amrooz state-run daily, May 17, 2020: “The Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (FDD) recently wrote in a report: The ban on the gas transmission is the next sanctions on Iran.”
What does the Iranian regime’s fall in oil sales mean?
Hassan Nasrallah, head of the Lebanese Hezbollah terrorist group, said: “Brothers, we are not ashamed to say that Hezbollah’s budget, expenses, food, and weapons are from the Islamic Republic of Iran. As long as Iran has money, it means we have money. Do you want more transparency?”
Vatan-e-Emrooz state-run daily, May 17, 2020: “Given the focus of sanctions on Iran’s gas exports, Iran’s permanent removal from the region’s gas market is highly likely.”
These are a set of facts that reflect the dire economic situation of the Iranian regime. On one hand, the regime faces a deadly crisis and deadlock in meeting the country’s minimum budget. On the other hand, under this dire economic situation, the regime’s policy of exporting terrorism is in a strategic deadlock. It is stuck for how to support and meet the needs of the regime’s proxy terrorist groups in other countries.
In other words, in the context of the coronavirus outbreak crisis, which has put additional pressure on all countries’ economies, there has been a more severe impact and outcome in Iran due to the inefficiency and widespread corruption of the regime and its officials and agents.
Considering the public dissatisfaction and anger of the Iranian people against this regime, which has resulted in the great uprisings of 2017-2019 and the beginning of 2020, a bleak future awaits this regime, with its institutionalized corruption, crime, and terrorism. The prospect is not only the fall of oil sales but also the collapse of the ruling religious dictatorship in Iran.