World media coverage of Iran-China strategic partnership

TEHRAN, Jan. 16 (MNA) – The 25-year comprehensive strategic partnership agreement which was signed by Iran and China in March 2021 has been reflected in international media outlets and received widespread media coverage.

Since the United States began to reimpose sanctions aimed at damaging the Iranian economy, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has stressed the need to press ahead with efforts to neutralize the sanctions imposed on the country. 

Iran has tried to boost its economic power by expanding its ties with Asian countries and striving to become self-sufficient in key domains.

Under that strategy, Iran and China signed a landmark 25-year comprehensive strategic partnership agreement in March 2021 in defiance of the US unilateral sanctions to strengthen the long-standing economic and political alliance. 

The deal officially documents the Sino-Iranian Comprehensive Strategic Partnership that had been announced during a visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping to Tehran in 2016 to boost economic cooperation between the two countries. It sets the outlines of the two countries’ cooperation in political, cultural, security, defense, regional, and international domains for the next 25 years. The deal also paves the way for Iran’s participation in the Belt and Road Initiative, a massive infrastructure project stretching from East Asia to Europe.

World media coverage of Iran-China strategic partnership

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian who traveled to China on Thursday as head of a high-ranking political and economic delegation at the invitation of his Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi said that a 25-year comprehensive strategic partnership agreement signed with China will be “win-win” for both nations since it serves the interests of both sides.

“In this agreement, we have included anything that is in line with the interests of the two nations. Tehran and Beijing will benefit from the deal, which will today enter its implementation phase,” he told China Global Television Network (CGTN) on Saturday.

Meanwhile, China has reaffirmed its opposition to unilateral sanctions imposed by the US on Iran as the Chinese and Iranian foreign ministers announced the launch of a 25-year cooperation agreement aimed at strengthening economic and political ties.

To know more about the importance of the agreement between Iran and China, here are some comments published in world media about the impact of the deal since the agreement has been signed by the two sides on March 27, 2021. 

Sino-Iranian relations undermine US, undercutting effectiveness of US sanctions

In an article published on Thursday, the leading US magazine "Foreign Policy" argued that growing Sino-Iranian relations undermine the United States and secure China’s access to Iranian oil and other important commodities.

“For its part, Iran will get billions of dollars in Chinese energy and infrastructure investment, undercutting the effectiveness of US sanctions" against the Islamic Republic, the article said.

It noted that much of Beijing and Tehran’s cooperation focuses on economic and diplomatic ties, saying Chinese investment will provide economic stimulus and revenue for Iran and increasingly mitigate the effectiveness of US sanctions against Iran.

Agreement undermines US efforts to use economic warfare to put “maximum pressure” on Iran

The Washington-based think tank "The Center for Strategic and International Studies" in its article published on March 29, 2021, pointed to the 25-year comprehensive strategic partnership agreement, saying, "China may well have made a major new strategic gain in the Persian Gulf, and one that gives it great influence in the MENA region as well as major new leverage in competing with the United States."

"Even if the agreement has no immediate military impact, it represents a major shift in strategic attitudes and lays the groundwork for such cooperation in the future," it added. "Even a purely economic agreement gives China a major new role in the entire Persian Gulf. It sharply undermines US efforts to use economic warfare to put “maximum pressure” on Iran, and it instead turns such US efforts into ways that allow China to gain a steadily greater economic and strategic presence in Iran."

World media coverage of Iran-China strategic partnership

Revitalized Iran will raise blood pressure in Washington, beyond

Stating that the strategic partnership between China and Iran has serious ramifications for the United States’ strategy of working with OPEC, China containment, and the West’s utilization of sanctions to pressure noncooperative nations, the American business magazine "Forbes" in an article published on April 5, 2021, wrote, "The agreement has seen President Joe Biden propose a democratic counterpart, calling for the west to rival Chinese spending in Central Asia, Africa, and developing nations."

"A revitalized Iran will raise the blood pressure in Washington and beyond. With the geopolitical backing of China and a lifeline for its economy, we can expect to see a more emboldened Islamic Republic – one with newfound leverage in negotiations. If President Biden thinks he can renegotiate Obama’s deal, that task just became significantly more difficult," Forbes noted.

Closer alliance between two US rivals inspired alarm in US

Following the sign of the 25-year partnership deal between China and Iran, Washington Post in its April article wrote that since news of the agreement surfaced in 2016, the prospect of a closer alliance between two US rivals has inspired alarm in the United States. In March, US President Biden told a reporter he had been “concerned for over a year” about the partnership.

Sino-Iranian agreement timely reminder for US

Financial Times also pointed the 25-year strategic partnership signed by China and Iran on April 3, 2021, saying that the Sino-Iranian agreement is a timely reminder for America that the end of its longest wars will not — and should not — mean the end of its involvement in the region.

US-based Al-Monitor described the 25-year partnership deal between China and Iran as an opportunity that gives China a stronger presence in one of the most populous countries in the Middle East and gives Iran a lifeline as it continues to battle the US economic sanctions.

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