Oil swap with Kazakhstan serves logistics interests of Iran
Baku, Azerbaijan, Nov. 14
By Ali Mustafayev – Trend:
Iran's intention to increase oil swap with the Caspian countries, in particular with Kazakhstan, is first of all logistically beneficial for the Islamic Republic, Oleg Egorov, an energy expert and chief researcher at the Institute of Economics of Kazakhstan, told Trend.
“Such a deal has already been concluded earlier. Years before Kazakhstan and Iran concluded an agreement on the supply of two million tons of oil from Kazakhstan’s Aktau port to Tehran and Tabriz. Then the supplies failed, because the Kazakh oil contained more sulfur than it was supposed to. This incident served to ensure that oil was thoroughly and completely cleaned by the Kazakh side."
However, now oil swap is being resumed and Kazakhstan is expected to start large oil deliveries to Iran, said Egorov.
He stressed that the main advantage for Iran in this transaction is the logistics aspect, since it is easier to transport oil to such cities as Tehran and Tabriz by sea from Aktau than from the south of the country.
“It is more profitable to deliver oil from Kazakhstan through the Caspian Sea to the Tehran and Tabriz refineries and export the oil extracted in the Persian Gulf to the world markets rather than transporting it from the south of the country to its north.”
Egorov added that the constant sanctions threats against Iran are pushing the country to search for reliable partners. Kazakhstan since the second half of 2017 has had strong ties with Iran.
"In this context, Kazakhstan has a very important policy, both in its own interests and in the interests of its partners, including Russia and Iran."
Previously, Iran announced its plans to increase the volume of crude swap with Caspian states to 40,000 barrels per day by end of 2017. The volume currently stands at averagely 10,000 barrels per day.
Iran stopped oil swaps with Caspian countries seven years ago after 10 years of operations which brought $800 million in revenues to the Islamic Republic.