Kharg Terminal Starts STS Crude Transfer
Development of infrastructures in Kharg Oil Terminal during the last two years has made it possible to export oil via ship-to-ship method in addition to using loading arms, the head of Iranian Oil Terminals Company said on Sunday.
“Upgrading facilities, including Pier T (long beach container terminal), at Kharg Oil Terminal has helped raise the facility's export capacity in a way that not only can eight oil tankers berth at the terminal simultaneously, but an STS transfer can also be conducted at the same time,” Pirouz Mousavi was also quoted as saying by Shana.
An STS operation is the transfer of cargo between seagoing ships positioned alongside, either while sailing or stationary. Cargo typically transferred via STS methods includes crude oil, liquefied natural gas, bulk cargo and petroleum products.
Most cargo movement takes place between a ship and a land-based terminal. However, it sometimes can be useful to transfer cargo from one ship to another in the open seas. One vessel operates as the terminal while the other moors.
"The terminal enjoys high potential to boost oil export," he said, noting that Iranian experts have managed to indigenize the technical installation of the terminal and Oil Ministry officials have made serious efforts to construct and provide maintenance for the much-needed equipment and machinery.
Underscoring the fact that eight supertankers docked simultaneously at Kharg terminal and loaded Iran's oil last week, the IOTC chief said more than 7 million barrels of oil were exported to target destinations from the terminal, which is a record since the Persian Gulf state doubled its oil export.
Stressing that Iranian experts took care of loading international supertankers, Mousavi said very large crude carriers had entered the terminal from South Korea, India and China.
According to Mousavi, the terminal is so developed that even 10 VLCC can berth simultaneously without facing any restrictions or technical problems.
From April 2015 until March 2016, 586 tankers of crude oil and petroleum products have used Kharg for different operations.
According to officials, more than 90% of Iran’s crude exports are shipped from Kharg Island and its oil terminal is operating at full steam to expedite the country’s return to the global oil market.
Abbas Asaddouz, the terminal's managing director, had earlier announced that the strategic project of overhauling underground pipelines at Kharg Oil Terminal in the Persian Gulf has been completed and Iran's largest oil terminal is fully geared for increasing oil exports.
The capacity to export oil and petroleum products has risen, following the renovation and overhaul of oil terminal facilities on Kharg Island in the Persian Gulf.
The overhaul of 15 marine loading arms in the island by the Iran Oil Terminals Company has increased oil loading rate by more than 70,000 barrels per hour.
Iran's oil tanker fleet is modern and averages eight years. It is capable of carrying an estimated 120 million tons of oil per year.
Kharg Oil Terminal, located on Kharg Island at the head of the Persian Gulf and about 25 kilometers off the coast of Iran, is a mainly marine oil outfit.
Iran, currently the third-largest producer of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, is raising crude production and exports to wrest back the share it lost to other producers.
Sanctions cut Iranian crude exports from a peak of 2.5 million bpd before 2011 to just over 1 million bpd. The country’s crude output is now between 3.5 million and 3.8 million barrels a day and exports are close to the pre-sanctions level of 4 million barrels.