China Gov’t Tells State-Owned Giants to Halt Iran Oil Purchase

China Gov’t Tells State-Owned Giants to Halt Iran Oil PurchaseChina Gov’t Tells State-Owned Giants to Halt Iran Oil Purchase

China’s government has told at least two of its state oil companies to avoid purchasing Iranian oil as the US prepares to impose sanctions on the Persian Gulf state, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
The freeze on imports by China National Petroleum Corp. and Sinopec is temporary and purchases may resume depending on the outcome of negotiations with the US, said the people, asking not to be identified because the information is confidential, Bloomberg reported. 
Companies that continue buying Iranian crude after sanctions take effect on Nov. 4 face the risk of being cut off from the American financial system.
The decision precedes an upcoming meeting between President Xi Jinping and US counterpart Donald Trump at the Group of 20 summit next month and coincides with flaring trade tensions between the countries. 
For Iran, no purchases by CNPC and Sinopec means it will lose out on sales to its top oil customer after a halt by other major buyers like Japan and South Korea.
Beijing-based spokesmen for both CNPC and Sinopec -- which is formally known as China Petrochemical Corp. -- declined to comment. 
Reuters reported earlier that the companies made no bookings for November-loading Iranian oil. “The Chinese side welcomes a practical solution that can maintain normal economic and trade cooperation with Iran,” foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said at a briefing on Thursday.
The Chinese government’s move is in contrast to India, which has said it plans to continue taking limited volumes from Iran in November.


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