Senior media officials of Iran and China emphasized the need for both Tehran and Beijing to stretch new horizons and open new chapters to expand cultural cooperation, announcing a joint radio station is scheduled to be established by the two countries' relevant bodies in the near future. In a meeting between Deputy Head of the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) Hossein Soufi and his counterpart from China Radio International (CRI) in Tehran on Wednesday, the officials singed a letter of understanding on launching a joint radio station by the two capitals. The document was signed in a ceremony during which Soufi said Iranian and Chinese media officials are determined to promote bilateral cooperation given the two countries' cultural and historical commonalties. He hoped that the joint radio station would help confront the West's media propaganda. Trade between Iran and China in the past year was estimated at $45bln. Iran is currently China's third largest supplier of crude, providing Beijing with roughly 12 percent of its total annual oil consumption. According to the figures released by China's General Administration of Customs in January, China's crude oil imports from Iran reached 2.5mln tons (mt) in December 2012, up 43 percent from November. The official data showed that China's daily crude imports from Iran in December 2012 also rose 3.6 percent compared to December 2011. It marks China's biggest crude import from Iran since it won a renewal of exemption from the United States' oil embargo against Iran.