12222014Mon

China imports of Iranian crude rebound to highest in six months

Bloomberg News

China’s imports of crude from Iran rebounded to the highest level in six months in December after the U.S. renewed an exemption from penalties on banks that process payments for the Persian Gulf nation’s oil.

China, the world’s second-biggest crude consumer, bought 2.52 million metric tons of oil from Iran last month, according to figures from the General Administration of Customs today. That’s up 43 percent from November, when purchases slipped 9.3 percent. Shipments averaged 596,000 barrels a day, the most since June, and advanced 3.6 percent from December 2011, the data showed.

The U.S. State Department on Dec. 7 extended exemptions for 180 days for China and eight other countries from measures related to sanctions against Iran, saying they had “continued to significantly reduce” their purchases of the Middle East nation’s oil. China’s total crude imports last year from the Islamic republic, its third-biggest supplier, slid 21 percent to 22 million tons, the customs data showed.

“The annual decrease in imports was within expectations and safely in the range of 20 percent to 30 percent in crude cuts required by the U.S.,” Li Li, an oil analyst with Shanghai-based commodity researcher C1 Energy, said by phone. “China will continue to import limited crude from Iran just to get around the U.S. as a political compromise.”

China’s monthly purchases from Iran may be 1.7 million tons to 2 million tons in the first half of this year, similar to the average for 2012, Li said. The U.S. and the European Union are pressuring Iran to curtail its nuclear program, which they say is aimed at developing an atomic weapon.

Saudi Arabia continued to rank as China’s largest crude supplier last year, providing 53.9 million tons, up 7.3 percent from 2011, the customs report showed. The Middle East nation accounted for 19.9 percent of China’s imports, compared with 19.8 percent a year earlier.

Search

Act of Cowardice

Iran's ruling tyrants have executed yet another political prisoner in flagrant violation of international law.  READ MORE

The rush to Tehran amidst rise in executions

World leaders should halt these visits and link any deal with Iran to its human rights record.  READ MORE

Arming a dictator

What if President Obama ordered the sale of arms to Syrian dictator to massacre his opponents? READ MORE

Slaughter intensifies under Rouhani

231 executions have occurred since the presidential election in June which brought to power Hassan Rouhani. READ MORE

Silence is not the answer

Iran: Bloody crackdown targeting dissidents aims at terrorizing the people into submission. READ MORE

Iran’s Murder Machine

The wheels of Iran's Murder Machine turn in tandem with its nuclear machine. READ MORE

What now?

The West must drop the dangerous pretence that talking to a regime not interested in listening constitutes the winning strategy. READ MORE

A facelift

This cosmetic facelift should not dupe the West into thinking that there are fresh prospects for a nuclear deal. READ MORE

An Act of Cowardice

The terrorist attack against Iranian exiles at Camp Liberty, Iraq, is another sign of Iranian regime's weakness. READ MORE

Much atalk about nothing

In Istanbul they merely agreed to talk about talking later in May in Baghdad, of all places. READ MORE

An unholy alliance

The brutal state-imposed bloodbath in Syria deserves uncompromising reproach. READ MORE

Iran cries for freedom

The clerical regime in Iran has predictably unleashed another wave of terror against the citizenry since the outburst of the latest string of mass protests beginning on 14 February. READ MORE

A new Iran policy

The latest round of nuclear talks had an all-too-familiar result: more time for Tehran and less time for the international community to prevent a nuclear-armed theocracy. READ MORE

Murder overlooked

What would the rest of us do if a mad gunman was in our midst, systematically murdering our fellow human beings in front of our eyes? The responsible amongst us would not look the other way, because that would serve as a source of encouragement for the murderers to carry on with their heinous acts unchecked. READ MORE

Standing up to Iran's executioners

The Iranian regime's malicious noose has yet again taken an innocent life. Political prisoner Ali Saremi, 63, was hanged in Tehran's infamous Evin prison after a lifetime of peacefully espousing human rights and democracy. READ MORE