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Graphic - Iranian oil: 40 years of revolution, war, sanctions and bans

Reuters  |  LONDON 

By Cooper

LONDON (Reuters) - Nearly 40 years after the 1979 Islamic revolution saw the exit of Western companies from Iran, the Iranian sector faces yet another costly disruption after a series of interruptions from war, sanctions and diplomatic isolation.

will reapply sanctions to Iran's sector on Nov. 4, after ending its participation in an international deal governing Iran's nuclear sector. Iran's outside the will stop or reduce purchases because of secondary sanctions applied on foreign companies that use the U.S. system.

Having lifted a self-imposed revolutionary ban on foreign investors in 1995, has struggled to attract external investment for any sustained period.

The isolation caused by poor relations with the and, in recent years, Tehran's efforts to develop a nuclear capability have prevented building output capacity.

But huge reserves run by the have helped it cling to its position as one of the world's five largest

The stopped buying Iranian oil or investing in Iran's in 1979 and has not resumed since.

produces nearly 4 percent of the world's and over the last 30 years has exported on average two-thirds of that.

The mid-1970s were the heyday of the Iranian oil sector, when its output accounted for 10 percent of global production.

It has never returned to the record 6 million barrels per day (bpd) it pumped in 1974.

In that year it pumped 70 percent of the amount produced by OPEC's biggest producer, its regional political rival Saudi Arabia, and more than three times as much as its neighbour

In 2012, when a first round of international nuclear sanctions was imposed, Iran's output was only a third of Saudi Arabia's, rising to 41 percent last year and just a little higher than Iraq's.

Output dropped to a low of 1.5 million bpd in 1980, the year after was overthrown, an event that caused the second across the economies of the West.

It took 23 years for Iran to restore 4 million bpd in 2003, with a post-revolutionary peak last year just short of 5 million bpd of crude and condensate combined.

Iran's exports halved during the depths of the 2012-2016 international sanctions on its nuclear programme.

It is unclear what proportion of Iranian crude sales will vanish from international markets after Nov. 4. The United States said on Friday it would temporarily spare from sanctions eight jurisdictions that import Iranian oil. The would not be one of the eight, U.S. said.

This isn't Iran's first round of sanctions. It has devised ways to export oil under the radar, evading detection by switching off the transponders of its fleet of nearly 40 supertankers, using alternatives to the U.S. dollar for payment, or selling crude to private refiners, in small, harder-to-track parcels.

Below is a timeline of the evolution of Iran's and exports, through sanctions, war and embargoes.

Iran's from 1975-2018

Iran's and production

Oil production from OPEC's Big Four since 1973

(Reporting by Cooper; Editing by and Dale Hudson)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, November 05 2018. 15:42 IST