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Iran Press TV

China reports first official oil imports from Iran in a year despite US bans

Iran Press TV

Thursday, 20 January 2022 9:41 AM

Latest data from the General Administration of Chinese Customs show the country's first official oil imports from Iran in a year, despite harsh US sanctions aimed at cutting the Islamic Republic's oil exports to "zero."

According to the figures released on Thursday, China brought in 260,312 tons of Iranian crude oil in December 2021.

However, it was not immediately clear which company brought in the cargo and which terminal it was discharged into.

China last recorded Iranian oil inflows in December 2020 at 520,000 tons.

Unofficially, China's imports of Iranian oil had held above 500,000 barrels per day on average between last August and October despite illegal US sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

In December 2021, Beijing ramped up its buying of Iranian crude after independent refiners were granted additional import quotas for that year.

Iran's oil exports take place while the United States has maintained a harsh regime of sanctions since May 2018 against countries and entities who engage in petroleum trade with Iran. Washington said back then the sanctions were "intended to bring Iran's oil exports to zero."

The restrictive measure were meant to force Iran to abandon its legitimate nuclear and defense activities and came after the former US administration pulled out of the 2015 nuclear deal.

Last week, Iran and China announced plans for cooperation in areas such as energy and infrastructure as they officially launched a 25-year comprehensive strategic partnership agreement.

The landmark deal, which was finalized in March 2021, is meant to strengthen long-standing economic and political alliance between Iran and China and is viewed is a milestone in their bilateral relations.

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