China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Tuesday it has lodged representations with the United States over its decision to end waivers on sanctions on Iranian oil imports.
The United States announced on Monday that it will no longer grant sanctions waivers to any country importing Iranian oil, in what marks the latest escalation of the administration's maximum pressure campaign on Tehran.
Iran will respond firmly to any Israeli naval action against its oil shipments, Iran's defence minister said on Wednesday, in comments that came a week after Israel's prime minister said its navy could act against Iranian oil "smuggling" to enforce US sanctions.
A vessel carrying 2 million barrels of Iranian oil discharged the crude into a bonded storage tank at the port of Dalian in northeast China on Monday, according to Refinitiv Eikon data and a shipping agent with knowledge of the matter.
Iran's oil production has already surpassed 3.5 million barrels per day, the deputy oil minister said on Saturday, and the Islamic Republic is seeking to increase oil and gas exports in the coming month.
Iran is exporting 1.3 million barrels a day (bpd) of crude oil, and will be pumping 1.5 million barrels a day by the start of the next Iranian year on March 20, a vice-president was quoted as saying on Saturday.