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Iran looks to export its first oil cargo from a terminal on the Sea of Oman without the need for tankers traveling through the Strait of Hormuz, senior officials said on Sunday.
“The first vessel has arrived in the Jask region and we expect operations to load heavy crude to start Monday noon,” the director of the Jask Oil Terminal, Vahid Maleki, told the Islamic Republic News Agency, as carried by Bloomberg.
Separately, Reza Dehghan, Deputy CEO for Development and Engineering Affairs at the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), told Iran’s oil ministry’s news service Shana:
“Due to the completion of the strategic and national plan for the transfer of crude oil from Goreh to Jask, the first shipment of crude oil will be exported from the Jask terminal in the coming few days.”
In May this year, Iran began sending crude oil through the Goureh-Jask Crude Oil Pipeline project, which will allow it to bypass the critical oil chokepoint the Strait of Hormuz.
The Goureh-Jask pipeline, which was estimated to cost US$2 billion, is 1,100 kilometers (684 miles) long and will carry crude oil from the Goureh oil terminal in the northwest of Iran to the Jask region on the Sea of Oman, without tankers having to pass through the Strait of Hormuz.
In the Persian Gulf, just two oil producers—Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE)—currently have some (limited) options for bypassing the Strait of Hormuz, where the daily transit in 2018 was 21 million barrels of oil per day or the equivalent of some 21 percent of global petroleum liquids consumption. Iran, like all others, currently relies on the Strait of Hormuz to get its oil to the market, although most of its sales are currently covert because of the U.S. sanctions.
Meanwhile, Iran’s Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh said after OPEC+ reached a deal on production on Sunday said that the group shouldn’t ignore Iran’s oil exports after the U.S. sanctions are removed. The world powers have adjourned the talks as Iran has signaled that it would continue negotiations when the new president Ebrahim Raisi takes over in early August.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.