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Iran has considerable volumes of oil in floating storage that it could quickly release should a deal with the United States be finalized.
In an update earlier this month, OilX claimed that Iran has some 40 million barrels, the bulk of which is probably condensate.
Vortexa estimates Iranian crude in floating storage at 60 to 70 million barrels while Kpler has estimated them at 93 million barrels, Bloomberg reported on Sunday.
The volumes would not be released immediately, however, as issues such as insurance and shipping would need to be dealt with first.
“Iran has built up a sizable flotilla of cargoes that could hit the market fairly soon,” John Driscoll from JTD Energy Services told Bloomberg.
Currently, Iran and the United States are both considering the final version of an agreement proposed by the European Union, which is acting as an intermediary in the negotiations.
According to recent reports, some of the problems have been straightened out but others still remain and need to get resolved before a deal is finalized.
Israel’s Haaretz reported yesterday that it had seen a copy of the draft proposal, which involves the release of prisoners from Iran and, in exchange, the release of Iranian funds from international bank accounts.
Iran will be free to keep the uranium it had enriched so far but banned from violating the nuclear deal, the Israeli daily wrote.
A nuclear deal would mean the return of Iranian crude to international markets, at a rate of some 1.3 million bpd, according to a recent Financial Times report. This would substantially lower oil prices, at least for a while.
Iran is eager to boost its exports of crude but it has signaled it would not rush into a deal until its last remaining demands are made. Chief among them is a guarantee that the deal would survive during future U.S. administrations.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
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Irina is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing on the oil and gas industry.