The United States on Monday imposed sanctions on Chinese and other firms it said helped to sell tens of millions of dollars' in Iranian oil and petrochemical products to East Asia as it seeks to raise pressure on Tehran to curb its nuclear programme.
The U.S. Treasury and the U.S. State Departments imposed sanctions on a total of six companies, four based in Hong Kong, one in Singapore, and one in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in actions that were announced in separate statements.
The Treasury accused Persian Gulf Petrochemical Industry Commercial Co. (PGPICC), one of Iran's largest petrochemical brokers, of using the firms to facilitate the sale of Iranian petroleum and petrochemical products to East Asia.
The Treasury targeted UAE-based Blue Cactus Heavy Equipment and Machinery Spare Parts Trading L.L.C., which it said helped sell millions of dollars of Iranian-origin petroleum products to Hong Kong-based Triliance Petrochemical Co. Ltd., which has previously been sanctioned by the United States.
It also targeted Hong Kong-based Farwell Canyon HK Limited and Shekufei International Trading Co., Limited for facilitating such sales for onward shipment to buyers in East Asia.
The Treasury accused PGPICC of using the firms' bank accounts, along with those of Hong Kong and Malaysia-based PZNFR Trading Limited, to collect millions of dollars in proceeds.
Separately, the State Department sanctioned Singapore-based Pioneer Ship Management PTE LTD for allegedly managing a vessel that carried Iranian petroleum products and Hong Kong-based Golden Warrior Shipping, Co. Ltd., for alleged transactions related to Iranian oil and petroleum products.