Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi
Source: Press TV
Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi says the Islamic Republic is a major and reliable source for China to meet its energy demands.
Speaking in a meeting with employees of the Iranian Embassy in the Chinese capital of Beijing on Monday evening, Salehi said that Iran -- given its rich energy sources -- can be a reliable and trustworthy trade partner for China, IRNA reported.
According to Iranian Minister of Economic Affairs and Finance Shamseddin Hosseini, Iran and China are going to establish a "joint oil and gas committee" to accelerate the execution of energy projects between the two Asian countries.
The aim of forming the committee is to speed up projects execution and to develop the Sino-Iranian ties in the field of energy.
The Iranian minister added that the formation of the Iran-China joint oil and gas committee was stressed in a memorandum of understanding on trade and economic cooperation, which was signed between Tehran and Beijing on April 21.
Iran is currently China's third largest supplier of crude oil, providing it with roughly 12 percent of its total annual oil consumption -- nearly one million barrels per day.
The volume of Iran's trade with China stood at about USD 30 billion in 2010, up from USD 400 million in 1994. The two countries have sought to enhance their bilateral trade ties significantly.
In February, Head of Iran-China Joint Chamber of Commerce Asadollah Asgaroladi pointed out that the two countries have drawn plans to increase the value of bilateral trade exchanges to USD 50 billion by 2015.
The 14th meeting of Iran-China Joint Economic Commission was held in the Chinese capital of Beijing on April 21.