SEOUL, South Korea (MCT) — Capping a diplomatic huddle in Tokyo with U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner, Japanese central government officials pledged Thursday to buy less Iranian oil in a nod to Washington’s campaign to sanction Iran over its nuclear program.
Geithner made his breakthrough just a day after meeting with officials in Beijing, who have rejected sanctions against Tehran.
The Iranian “nuclear development problem can’t be ignored by the world, so from that perspective we understand the U.S. actions,” Finance Minister Jun Azumi told reporters after meeting with Geithner.
Japan imports 10 percent of its oil from Iran, but Azumi said his nation will begin “reducing this 10 percent share as soon as possible in a planned manner.”
Geithner visited China and Japan to win support for the sanctions targeting Iran’s oil industry – barring financial institutions from the U.S. market if they do business with Iran’s central bank.