"We added 20 oil tankers to the country's fleet in a bid to own one of the world's largest fleets with over 40 oil tankers," Qassemi told FNA on Saturday.
He underlined that a major problem faced by the government was transportation of crude oil that was conducted by foreign shipping lines before the western sanctions were imposed on the country, but Iran managed to overcome the problem.
"We could increase the crude sales that had decreased to minimum levels under tough sanctions (including the one on P&I insurance of all tankers carrying Iranian crude) through adopting energy diplomacy," Qassemi said.
Last month, Seifollah Jashnsaz, a senior official at the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), said that that Iran earned more than $100 billion revenue from oil exports under sanctions.
The NICO as well as a number of the company’s managers have been subjected to western sanctions since 2008.
Jashnsaz, a former managing-director of NICO, said that despite increasing sanctions, the company has managed to invest some $20bln on different projects.
Late in March, the International Energy Agency announced that Iran increased its crude exports in March for a fifth consecutive month as global demand for its oil rose after Tehran and the major world powers reached a deal in Geneva in November.
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