South Korea limits Iran exports on payment concerns
Reuters / Meeyoung Cho

South Korea has imposed curbs on exports to Iran - mainly steel, cars and electronics - to reduce its risk of payment defaults as western sanctions disrupt Iranian oil exports, highlighting the growing risk of doing business with the Islamic Republic.

The move to limit the trade exposure of Asia's fourth-largest economy, which sold $1.7 billion of goods in Iran in the first quarter of this year, was announced by South Korea's leading trade and business body and came into effect this week.

Industry sources said that Korean refiners will halt Iranian oil imports from July.

International sanctions have already made it difficult for Iran to repatriate oil payments from South Korea and other countries.

South Korea imported 25.25 million barrels of oil from Iran in January-April of 2012, down about 10 percent from a year ago, according to state-run Korea National Oil Corp (KNOC).


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