South Korea’s oil imports from Iran rise by almost 1/4: Report

Iran-oilOfficial data show that South Korea’s imports of Iranian crude have increased by almost a fourth compared to last year, despite the West’s unilateral embargoes against Iran’s oil and financial sectors, a report says.

According to statistics released by Korea Customs Service, Seoul bought 793,361 metric tons, equivalent to about 188,000 barrels a day, of crude oil from Iran in December which showed a 24-percent rise compared with the 639,281 tons in the corresponding period a year earlier, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday.

South Korea halted crude imports from Iran in August and September after its refiners lost insurance coverage on ships because of the illegal sanctions imposed against Iran.

However, Iran responded by using state-owned tankers to carry cargoes, a move that would allow South Korea to receive crude shipments without concerns over insurance guarantees.

The report added that South Korean SK Innovation Company and Hyundai Oilbank Company resumed crude shipments after Iran offered its own tankers.

At the beginning of 2012, the US and the European Union imposed new sanctions on Iran’s oil and financial sectors with the goal of preventing other countries from purchasing Iranian oil, extending insurance coverage for tankers carrying Iranian crude and conducting transactions with the Central Bank of Iran.

The illegal US-engineered sanctions were imposed based on the unfounded accusation that Iran is pursuing non-civilian objectives in its nuclear energy program.

Iran strongly rejects the allegation, arguing that as a committed signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), it has the right to use nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.

By Press TV


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