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China Tells State-Owned Giants to Halt Iran Oil Buying

  • CNPC and Sinopec to avoid loading Iranian crude in November
  • Freeze on imports may be temporary; may resume at later stage
Crude Oil Shipments In The Persian Gulf
Photographer: Ali Mohammadi/Bloomberg

China’s government has told at least two of its state oil companies to avoid purchasing Iranian oil as the U.S. 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 U.S., said the people, asking not to be identified because the information is confidential. 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.