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Tuesday, 24 January 2012

LARA SETRAKIAN: Iran, China And Saudi Arabia — An Oil Markets Love Triangle

The oil politics of the Persian Gulf are looking more like a love triangle this week, and China is the hot date. Iran is courting the Chinese with discounted oil, hoping to keep the favor of its top client. The Chinese are courting oil-rich Arab states, looking to secure a steady supply of crude -- hedging the risk that sanctions or military conflict might cut Iran's flow.

This week Premier Wen Jiaobao took a tour of Saudi Arabia, Abu Dhabi, and Qatar, an astute foreign policy move, according to security analyst Theodore Karasik in Dubai.

'China wants guaranteed oil supplies...so it's playing all the countries of the Gulf, to it advantage,' he said.