U.S. sanctions unable to hinder Iranian oil exports: report

April 15, 2022 - 13:17

TEHRAN - Washington Free Beacon, an American conservative political journalism website, has recently said in a report that Iran's "fleet of ghost ships" has been successfully sidestepping U.S. sanctions, delivering millions of barrels of crude oil and petroleum products to foreign destinations.

The report claims that Iranian oil tankers have shipped at least $22 billion worth of oil only to China since 2021. The Iranian Oil Ministry, however, does not reject or approve the mentioned figure.

Although the statistics mentioned by the western media and press are not completely accurate, they indicate the increase in the Islamic Republic’s oil exports despite sanctions, Oil Ministry’s news portal Shana reported on Thursday.

According to Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, the country's oil exports have increased by 40 percent in recent months.

The term "ghost ships", previously used by other publications such as The Wall Street Journal and Reuters, refers to Iranian oil tankers which carry cargoes around the world without being detected.

Earlier this month, the Managing Director of the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) praised the significant role of the National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC) in bypassing sanctions and boosting the country’s oil exports during the previous Iranian calendar year (ended on March 20).

“This success (increased sales of oil and gas condensate) came at a time when the sanction conditions have become even stricter,” Mohsen Khojasteh-Mehr said.

Iranian oil production increases by 7,000 barrels

Iran has been ramping up its oil production over the past few months following the recovery of the global markets from the negative impacts of the coronavirus pandemic and the developments in the Vienna talks.

The country’s crude oil production in March reached 2.546 million barrels per day (bpd) to register a 7,000-barrel increase compared to the figure for February, according to OPEC’s latest monthly report.

Iran produced 2.539 million bpd of crude oil in February, the report said citing secondary sources.

The Islamic Republic’s average crude output for the first quarter of 2022 stood at 2.528 million bpd indicating a 56,000-bpd increase compared to the figure for the fourth quarter of the previous year, the report indicated.

The country’s heavy crude oil price also increased by $19.36 in March, to register a 20.8 percent rise compared to the previous month, according to the OPEC report.

EF/MA

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