Tehran, Iran, April 23
By Dalga Khatinoglu- Trend:
The Supreme Audit Court of Iran confirmed that a subsidiary of the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) sold several crude oil and condensate freights worth about $1 billion to International Safe Oil Company in the second half of 2012.
The exact value of sold cargoes is $1,004, 609, 117.
According a report released by the Supreme Audit Court of Iran says that the Malaysian International Safe Oil Company (ISO) should have paid off its debt by the end of 2012, but hadn't.
The U.S. and EU adopted tough sanctions targeting Iran's oil revenues in mid-2012 to persuade Iran to curb its sensitive nuclear activities. After sanctions, Iran's oil exports dropped significantly and went from 2.5 million barrels to 1.07 million barrels per day in 2013.
Iran reportedly has been using various ways to bypass the imposed sanctions on both its oil exports and transferring the payments.
ISO was sanctioned by EU in December 24, 2012 for abusing imposed sanctions on Iran's oil exports by this Union.
Now, The Supreme Audit Court of Iran reported on April 22 that ISO hasn't paid off its debts to Iran yet.
The U.S. Department of the Treasury expanded Iranian related sanctions in April 2013. According to the report published by the Treasury on April 11, 2013, the International Safe Oil was designated for providing financial, material, technological or other support for NIOC and Naftiran Intertrade Company (NICO).
The report says ISO is a part of the Sorinet Group, and operates in Malaysia. ISO purchased over tens millions barrels of Iranian crude oil from NICO in 2012 in a deal that was negotiated between Zanjani and the leadership of NICO.
The Sorinet Group is owned by Iranian businessman Babak Zanjani, who has been blacklisted by both the U.S. and EU for helping Iran to evade western sanctions.
Babak Zanjani was arrested in December 2013, charged with corruption, economic frauds and defrauding the government, as well as his own $2.35 billion debt to Iran's Oil Ministry.
The U.S. Treasury reported in April 2013 that Dubai-based Sorinet Commercial Trust Bankers (SCT Bankers) and Malaysia-based First Islamic Investment Bank (FIIB) were designated for providing financial, material, technological or other support for NIOC and NICO.
The report said that in August 2012, FIIB issued a letter of credit for Hong Kong Intertrade Company (HKICO) for almost $600 million in relation to an oil contract. HKICO was identified by Treasury as a NIOC front company in July 2012. A May 2012 oil contract negotiated by Zanjani on behalf of ISO worth over $200 million was financed by both FIIB and SCT Bankers.
On December 21, 2012, the European Union also imposed sanctions under its Iran-related authority against Zanjani, International Safe Oil, Sorinet Commercial Trust Bankers, and First Islamic Investment Bank.