Latest economic performance data released by the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) show the country nearly doubled its crude revenues in the quarter to late December.
The figures published on the CBI website on Monday showed that Iran's crude revenues had reached $14.614 billion in the third quarter of the calendar year beginning March 2020, up from $8.558 billion recorded at the end of the previous quarter.
Non-crude export revenues also surged by 69.3% to a total of $19.597 billion in the quarter to December 20, showed the tables compiled by CBI’s Economic Research and Policies Department.
Iran’s crude revenues began to drop in the second half of 2019 after the United States toughened its sanctions on the country after pulling out of the 2015 international agreement on Tehran’s nuclear activities, known as the JCPOA.
Iran had earned just over $29 billion from oil exports in the calendar year to March 2020, down from over $60 billion in the previous year, according to the figures published on Monday.
The figures showed that oil revenues had hovered around $53 billion in the year before the signing of the JCPOA which led to the lifting of international sanctions on Iran.
A jump in crude revenues in the quarter to December 2020 is consistent with reports showing that Iran ramped up its oil exports late last year as it found new ways of getting round US sanctions to sell its oil to customers in Asia, including to China.
Recent figures by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) show Iran is gradually restoring the oil output that had been lost because of US sanctions in recent years. The country pumped 13.4% more crude in April compared to March to reach 2.614 million barrels per day of production. That was the highest increase among members of OPEC, an organization which maintains cuts to supply to boost international prices.
Oil market analysts believe Iran would significantly increase its crude exports in the second half of 2021 if it agrees to US and international demands to revive the JCPOA.