Official data show that China’s crude oil imports from Iran rose 50 percent in the first five months of 2014 compared to the same period a year ago.
Customs data released on Monday also indicated that China’s Iran oil purchases increased 36 percent in May from a year earlier, Reuters reported.
China’s May oil shipments from Iran were 3.22 million tonnes, or 757,900 barrels per day (bpd), the report said.
China, which is Iran’s largest oil client, has been increasing oil purchases from the Islamic Republic in light of implementation of the 2013 interim deal between the Islamic Republic and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council – the United States, Russia, China, France and Britain – plus Germany.
The deal was reached on November 24, 2013, in the Swiss city of Geneva to set the stage for the full settlement of the dispute over Iran’s nuclear energy program.
Under the Geneva deal, the six countries agreed to provide Iran with some sanctions relief in exchange for Iran agreeing to limit certain aspects of its nuclear activities during a six-month period. It was also agreed that no nuclear-related sanctions would be imposed on the Islamic Republic within the same time frame.
According to industry and government sources, Asian buyers were expected to import about 1.25 million-1.3 million bpd of Iranian oil in the six months through June.
World oil giants, including Royal Dutch Shell, British Petroleum (BP), Malaysia’s Petronas, Spain’s Repsol, Russia’s second-largest oil producer, Lukoil, France’s Total and Italy’s Eni, have shown interest in returning to the Iranian market following the implementation of the Geneva deal.
By Press TV
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