"From the point of view of stable petroleum supplies, we are still hoping to ask the government to negotiate tenaciously with the USA government to achieve an exemption for Japan from its sanctions against Iran", Tsukioka said. The Trump administration has threatened entities and countries with consequences if they do not bring down their import of Iranian oil to zero by November 4.
Under the mechanism, India used to pay in euros to clear 55 per cent of its dues through Ankara-based Halk bank.
In May, US President Donald Trump withdrew from a 2015 nuclear accord with Iran and ordered the renewal of US sanctions.
India had planned to import about 25 million tonnes of crude oil from Iran in the current fiscal, up from 22.6 million tonnes imported in 2017-18.
France and Germany, two European countries which are still part of the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran are working out a payment mechanism that will not include the USA dollar in financial transactions with Tehran.
Speaking at a press conference in Tokyo, Tsukioka said that it would be up to individual refiners to take their own decisions on Iranian crude oil imports. As the USA sanctions on the import of crude oil from Iran looms large, India is in touch with both Iran and the United States on the complicated matter.
Looking to win waivers, India is reportedly significantly reducing Iranian oil purchases this month and next.
Iran is an important supplier of oil to Japan, accounting for about 5 percent of its crude imports, and Japanese refiners, together with the government, will try to maintain its good relationship with the Middle Eastern country, said Tsukioka, adding that the USA sanctions will not cause a major impact.
India has asked Afghanistan-close ally of the U.S. in the region - to take up the case and apprise Washington the significance of strategic relationship between India and Iran.
Work was slowed by the difficulty equipment suppliers had in obtaining financing for the project, a effect of hesitancy among banks about whether the United States might still try to sanction the project. It has also been hoping that the U.S. will give it some relief from the sanctions. Iran was also the fifth largest crude supplier over January-July.
The second source said after the United States announced it would re-impose sanctions in May, Iran has already received payments for some cargoes in rupees.