Iran to restart oil swap operation in Caspian Sea
Azerbaijan, Baku, June 12/Trend/
The National Iranian Oil Company and foreign companies agreed on confidential formula to continue oil swap operation at Caspian Sea after 15 months of suspension, Mehr News Agency reported
After more than 440 days halt of Iran's oil swap operation from Caspian Sea countries, foreign companies started to continue swapping oil in Neka Oil Terminal. The National Iranian Oil Company (NİOC) agreed to continue the operation by applying new conditions after foreign pressed charges against NIOC over halt of oil swap operation.
Iranian officials believe the new formula designed by foreign companies supports Iran's national interests in international trade. Meanwhile Iran private sector also expressed tendency to join the project.
Seyyed Hamid Hosseini, head of Iranian Oil Products Exporters Union said that "the oil swap will continue from Neka Oil Terminal to feed Tehran and Tabriz refineries"
The charge of swap operation depends on quality and degree of IPI, but an offer of $25 submitted to Oil Ministry for a ton of oil, he said.
After more than one year suspension there is a possibility of oil swap from Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and some part of Russia to Persian Gulf. Neka Oil Terminal is currently one of the Iran's biggest oil swap terminals in the Caspian Sea.After 13 years of oil swap from the Caspian littoral countries through Iran's route to the Persian Gulf, foreign companies refused to re-sign oil swap agreement with Iran on April 2010 and Iran's crude oil swap rate slid reaching zero.
Lack of extension in swap agreement from Select Energy Trading, Dragon Oil Emirate, Swiss Vitol and Ireland's Caspian oil development is considered to be the main reason why the international companies chose pipeline routes of Baku - Novorossiysk and Caspian consortium pipe line to transfer Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan export oil to their destination markets.
More than 100, 000 Caspian Sea oil barrels have conveyed through Iran's route to the Persian Gulf from 1997 to 2010. Iran made $146 million in profit from the oil swap during this period.
Neka oil terminal pipe line and reservoir has the capacity to swap 500,000 oil barrels to Tehran and Tabriz refineries.