*Note: This is a provisional translation for reference purpose only.
9:13 - 9:18 a.m.
Friday, June 29
Press Conference Room, METI
US Sanctions against Iran
Q: It became clear that the US had asked each country to suspend importing crude oil from Iran by the 4th of November. Could you tell us your thoughts on this issue, including its impact on Japanese companies, and how the Japanese government will respond to it?
A: As for the US sanctions against Iran, I would like to refrain from any comments at this moment for it is currently under negotiation.
The relationship with Iran is important for Japan, and I would like to continue to assert Japan's position in future consultations. I will continue to undertake a cautious analysis of the impact of these sanctions and discuss with relevant countries, including the US, in order to insulate our stable energy supply and the activities of Japanese companies from significant adverse effects.
Q: As the price of crude oil currently remains high, it would be likely to affect Japanese companies. Given such circumstances, could you tell us what stance you will take in going into the negotiations?
A: As for the crude oil price, I recognize that behind the recent resurgence there are several factors such as the results of the OPEC Conference last week, oil stocks decreasing in the US due to economic trends, unpredictable international political and economic situations over the Middle East not only by the sanctions against Iran but also by the situation in Libya.
I will continue to closely monitor developments in the future, including this issue over Iran. Japan would like to firmly assert its position regarding this issue.
Q: As the US is requesting compliance with the deadline “by the 4th of November”, it means that we will have to draw a conclusion this summer, if we take relevant energy sectors’ responses into account. Could you tell us if your recognition is the same? That is, reaching a certain conclusion this summer?
A: As this issue is currently under negotiation, I would like to refrain from making any comments including the prospects of the schedule.