Economy

China slams EU embargo on Iran oil, sanctions

Press Trust of India Beijing | Updated on March 12, 2018

Unsupportive of the EU's decision to impose an embargo on Iran's oil exports, China, which receives a huge chunk of its fuel supplies from the Gulf State, today contended that pressuring Tehran “blindly” on its nuclear issue was not a constructive approach.



“To blindly pressure and impose sanctions on Iran are not constructive approaches,” the Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson was quoted as saying by the Xinhua news agency.



“China has consistently advocated settlement of international disputes through dialogue and consultation,” the spokesperson said.



The comments came in response to the European Union imposing an embargo on Iran's oil exports along with a number of other financial sanctions.



China, a major importer from Iran, was also reluctant to join sanctions imposed by the US, asserting it is a unilateral move by Washington, lacking the United Nations' authorisation.



Iran is the third largest oil exporter to China, which imported 27.76 million tonnes from Tehran last year.



China imports about 5,57,000 barrels a day from Iran.

STEPS UP DIPLOMACY

Though not supporting the sanctions, China stepped up its diplomacy in the Gulf region specially to safeguard its oil imports.



As the US, EU stepped up pressure on Iran, the Chinese Premier, Mr Wen Jiabao, went on a tour of Gulf countries, including Saudi Arabia, which is the largest supplier of oil to energy- hungry China.



Mr Wen defended China's oil imports from Iran, saying “the oil trade between China and Iran has been justified. And I think China is not the only country doing oil trade with Iran, and it is the same with Libya. The Strait of Hormuz should be kept open under all circumstances.”

Published on January 26, 2012

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