Bloomberg News

Iran Sanctions Don’t Determine China’s Oil Needs, Official Says

March 04, 2012

Sanctions imposed on Iran won’t influence China’s oil imports from the country, the nation’s former energy head said.

“China’s crude import costs may be pushed up by tension in Iran as oil prices could rise on supply concern,” Zhang Guobao, former head of China’s National Energy Administration, said at the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference in Beijing today. Zhang said prices determine how much the country imports.

China opposes trade restrictions against Iran and said oil sanctions aren’t “constructive,” the official Xinhua News Agency cited the foreign ministry as saying on Jan. 26, after the European Union and the U.S. announced curbs against crude exports by the Islamic republic. The world’s second-biggest oil importer is expected to raise crude purchases to a record this year to bolster emergency stockpiles and to feed additional refining capacity.

China will bring online two emergency crude oil reserve sites this year, Zhang said, without elaborating. China finished the first phase of its emergency stockpile of 103.2 million barrels of oil in 2009 and the second phase is scheduled to be completed by early 2013. The country is still in gas supply talks with Russia, Zhang said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jing Yang in Shanghai at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Liu at

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