Many imported hand tools arrive from the manufacturer coated with a protective substance, called Cosmoline® rust inhibitor. Shipping tools with this coating helps to prevent them from rusting. The coating is easy to remove; here's how to do it.
Wipe the tool with a paper towel or other disposable absorbent material. This alone should be enough to leave the tool feeling clean and usable.
If some Cosmoline still remains on the tool, use a small amount of kerosene or paint thinner on a clean paper towel or other disposable absorbent material to dissolve it.