Iran's economy minister said oil prices will "certainly" rise if the European Union moves ahead with an embargo in July and that sanctions will backfire on those who impose them, as per Reuters. The European Union is preparing for a total embargo on the purchase of Iranian crude oil in July. The United States has also imposed sanctions targeting Iran's energy and banking sectors. In January, the International Monetary Fund warned that global crude prices could rise as much as 30% if Iran halted oil exports as a result of US and European Union sanctions. These sanctions are aimed at curbing Iran's nuclear ambitions. The West suspects Iran's nuclear program is aimed at developing weapons, while Iran says it is for peaceful energy purposes.