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Embargo against Iranian oil no better than adding fuel to fire

01-05-2012 16:30 BJT

BEIJING, Jan. 5 (Xinhua) -- The preliminary agreement reportedly reached by European Union (EU) countries Wednesday to stop oil imports from Iran is but a blow to the global market, but it might also be empiricism to address the sensitive and highly strained Iranian situation in that way.

The EU and the United States brought forward a series of sanction measures recently, trying to exert pressures on Iran in the political, diplomatic, trade and financial spheres.

The U.S. Congress last month passed bills to consolidate existing sanctions against Iran and required more foreign banks to stop financial contacts with Tehran. The EU also added more Iranian nationals and firms to the black list of sanctions.

With the situation surrounding the Iran nuclear issue getting more intense, Washington and the Brussels are trying to subdue the obstinate Iran by frapping Iran's economic gullet with more rigorous sanctions.

However, it could be a miscalculation.

From the economic perspective, the sanctions launched by the Western countries would, of course, bring difficulties to Iran, but in a globalized world, it will by no means totally block Iran's trade and economic cooperation with the outside world.

As the Iranian government put it, even if the European Union halts its oil trade with Iran, Tehran would soon find replacement in the international markets.

Economic sanction is, to a certain extent, a double-edged sword, as the sanction would also hurt Iran's trading partners including the EU. Statistics show that currently Iran exports around 2.6 million barrels of crude oil daily, of which, 450,000 barrels are sold to the EU.

EU member states like Greece and Italy had been reluctant to the oil trade embargo as such moves would bring more difficulties to their already troubled economy.

From the political perspective, the Iranian foreign ministry has repeatedly said that Iran would never give up uranium enrichment.

This implies that nuclear strategy is one of the key part of Tehran's political policy and Iran has made some achievements in this regard. Therefore, it is difficult for Tehran to abandon the strategy rashly just because of economic sanctions from the EU.

In short, the oil embargo threatened by the EU is no better than adding fuel to fire. Instead, seeking political dialogue and negotiation will be a more appropriate approach to solve the problem.

 

Editor:Bai Yang |Source: Xinhua

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