16 Jan 2012

Oil warning issued by Iran

9:40 am on 16 January 2012

Iran has warned its neighbours not to boost oil production if Western powers implement sanctions against Tehran over its nuclear programme.

OPEC governor Mohammad Ali Khatibi told the Sharq daily newspaper that if Arab producers did so, they would be the main culprits for whatever happened in the region, including in the Strait of Hormuz.

''These measures will not be perceived as friendly, he said.

The BBC reports that was a reference to Iran's threat to close the link to the Persian Gulf.

Tensions in the Gulf have caused occasional spikes in oil prices in recent weeks.

European Union foreign ministers are meeting on 23 January to consider imposing would impose sanctions on Iran's oil industry and possibly other sectors.

EU members last year bought about a fifth of all oil exported by Iran.