U.S. Sanctions COSCO Companies for Transporting Iranian Oil
The U.S. has taken “further action as part of our maximum economic pressure campaign against the Iranian regime and those who enable its destabilizing behavior” by imposing sanctions on six Chinese companies.
The U.S. Department of State says the companies knowingly engaging in a significant transaction for the transport of oil from Iran in defiance of sanctions set in place in November 2018. The firms sanctioned under E.O. 13846 are: China Concord Petroleum Co., Limited, Kunlun Shipping Company Limited, Pegasus 88 Limited, and COSCO Shipping Tanker (Dalian) Seaman & Ship Management Co, Ltd. The U.S. is imposing additional sanctions on the following two Chinese companies, which own or control one or more of the four companies identified above and had knowledge of their sanctionable conduct: Kunlun Holding Company Ltd. and COSCO Shipping Tanker (Dalian) Co., Ltd.
The U.S. is also imposing sanctions on the following five individuals, who are executive officers of one or more of the companies identified above: Bin Xu, Yi Li, Yu Hua Mao, Luqian Shen, and Yazhou Xu.
The transaction in question took place after the expiration of China’s Significant Reduction Exception (SRE) on May 2, 2019, and was not covered by that SRE.
This is one of the largest sanctions actions the U.S. has taken against since sanctions were re-imposed in November 2018. The sanctions aim to deny the Iranian regime critical income to engage in foreign conflicts, advance its ballistic missile development and fund terror around the world, says the U.S. Department of State. “We are committed to fully administering our sanctions; the Iranian regime must cease these destabilizing activities or face greater economic pressure and diplomatic isolation.”
Earlier this year, the U.S. blacklisted Chinese state energy company Zhuhai Zhenrong Co. Ltd. for allegedly buying oil from Iran.