Enemies cannot cut off Iran’s gasoline supply: Ahmadinejad  

September 16, 2009 - 0:0

TEHRAN - Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said that it will be almost impossible for the United States and its allies to cut off Iran’s gasoline supply.

The Obama administration and some allies of the U.S. are considering the option of using economic pressure to force foreign companies to cut off supplies of gasoline and other refined oil products to Tehran if it does not respond to their demand to halt uranium enrichment.
“Some (countries) are trying to challenge the Islamic Republic by threatening to impose sanctions and cut off the gasoline supply to the country… I call on the oil minister to present a plan within one or two weeks to counter such threats,” the president said here yesterday at the ceremony held to inaugurate Oil Minister Masoud Mirkazemi and to bid farewell to former oil minister Gholamhossein Nozari.
In the coming days, “I would like to ask them to sanction the gasoline supply to Iran,” he added.
“The country should press ahead towards self-sufficiency in gasoline production,” he noted.
“Today, the oil industry enjoys various capabilities and such capabilities give the country both political and economic strength,” Ahmadinejad stated.
Underlining the necessity to take a proactive approach in the oil industry, the president suggested that responsibility for the petrochemical industry could be transferred to the Ministry of Industries and Mines.
“In my view, the petrochemical industry should become independent from the oil industry and should be transferred to the Ministry of Industry.
“The move would allow the Oil Ministry to focus more intensely and to use all its potential to complete oil projects and launch new ones,” he explained.
The president also asked MPs to approve his economic reform plan, which calls for the redirection of subsidies.
“I urge Majlis deputies to press ahead with (the process of) approving the subsidies elimination plan as the basis for the country’s economic reform so that the Oil Ministry will no longer have to grapple with (so many) different challenges.”
Ahmadinejad also asked Oil Ministry officials to present plans to reduce the demand for gasoline and, over the long run, to reform the system of the Oil Ministry.
Iran’s economy is vastly dependant on oil as it accounts for 80 percent of the country’s exports. The nation consumes over 65 million liters of gasoline per day but only produces 45 million liters at domestic refineries