3/20/2012

Kuwaiti Amir: Iran Assures Won't Close Hormuz Strait - Report


RIYADH (Zawya Dow Jones)--Kuwait's ruler said that Iran has assured officials in the Gulf state that it won't close the strategic strait of Hormuz, through which Persian Gulf producers export around one-fifth of the world's oil supplies, Kuwait's official news agency reports Tuesday.
"The Strait of Hormuz is considered a vital artery for the world as approximately half of the oil supply passes through it, and the Gulf Cooperation Council's countries, including Kuwait, have contacted the officials in Iran to ensure that no action is taken to close [it]," Kuwait News Agency, or KUNA, cites Amir Sabah al-Ahmed al-Jaber al-Sabah as saying.
"We have received assurances from Iran that it will not take this step. And international efforts are also in this direction," he said.
Last week, the ruler highlighted the need to secure sea lanes as a key challenge faced by the global oil industry. The Kuwaiti head of state didn't name any country, but the remarks underscore mounting oil-shipping worries about Iran's threat to block the strategic Strait of Hormuz.
"The international oil industry confronts great challenges" including "securing international sea lanes," al-Sabah said.


-By Summer Said, Dow Jones Newswires; +966-546-842373; summer.said@dowjones.com
(END) Dow Jones Newswires