'South Korea to resume oil imports from Iran'
Seoul: South Korea was expected to resume oil imports from Iran as early as next month after the South Korean government made a tentative conclusion that it would accept Iran's proposal to supply oil to the Asian nation on its own tankers, local media reported on Friday.
According to Chosun Ilbo, Iran offered to transport oil to South Korea on its own tankers after the Asian nation stopped oil imports from Iran starting this month. The South Korean government tentatively decided to accept the proposal from the Persian Gulf state following discussion among related ministry officials.
"The government is considering accepting Iran's proposal. But, the final decision is not made yet," a government source who declined to be identified told Xinhua.
South Korea was forced to stop oil imports from Iran starting July as the European Union (EU) banned insurance on Iranian oil shipments. Without insurance from Europe, local shippers cannot carry crude as European insurers are now covering almost all of insurance on cargo from the Persian Gulf nation.
Iran planned to provide USD 1 billion of sovereign guarantees to its tankers that carry crude heading for South Korea, according to the newspaper.