New Delhi: Following the dispute between USA and Iran over disruption of traffic flowing through the vital Strait of Hormuz oil route has increased crude oil prices in international market. The prices are likely to reach the highest mark for the third time in a year.

With the indications of improvement in US economy, the prices of crude oil are about to reach USD 100 per barrel. For the last two months the prices is being maintained at this rate. On Friday at New York Mercantile Exchange it reached a mark of 99.78 dollars per barrel.

Investors believe that by 2012 USA will emerge from economic crises which will have an effect on the crude oil market. More so, experts say that further fluctuation in prices is dependent on cold war between Iran and Western Europe.

Iran is the world's fourth-largest oil producer, with an output of about 4 million barrels of oil a day. It relies on oil exports for about 80 percent of its public revenue.

Iran has adopted an aggressive military policy in recent months in response to increasing threats from the US and Israel. It has warned US to stop naval traffic on Strait of Hormuz oil route.

A closure of the Strait could temporarily cut off some oil supplies and force shippers to take longer, more expensive routes that would drive oil prices higher. It also potentially opens the door for a military confrontation that would further rattle global oil markets.

JPN/Bureau