Iran Oil Exports Hit Record in April

Iran’s Oil Exporters Hit Record in April
Iran’s Oil Exporters Hit Record in April

Iran’s crude exporters had a banner April, with shipments soaring to a record right before the possible reimposition of US sanctions on their oil sales.

Crude exports by OPEC’s third-biggest producer totaled 2.61 million barrels a day, according to the Iranian Oil Ministry’s Shana news service.

That beat the previous high of 2.44 million barrels a day in October 2016, Bloomberg reported.

US President Donald Trump will decide by May 12 whether to keep America in an international agreement that restricts Iran’s nuclear activities in exchange for relief from sanctions and a restriction on oil sales. Since sanctions were eased as of January 2016, Iran’s crude production has almost doubled.

Some oil traders are already unwilling to sign contracts for Iranian crude and refined products that would be valid after May 12, according to recent interviews with six companies that buy and sell oil in the Middle East.

Iran’s crude and condensate exports in April were 2.87 million barrels a day, Shana reported.

Observed shipments of both rose to 2.83 million barrels a day from 2.48 million barrels in March, according to ship-tracking data compiled by Bloomberg. Crude volume alone rose to 2.48 million barrels from 2.06 million, the data show.

The surge follows an eye-catching increase in the country's crude exports to India and China, which together took 1.4 million barrels a day from Iran in April.

India purchased about 700,000 barrels of crude oil from Iran in March, hitting a record high in the history of bilateral oil trades.

Iran's oil exports to India were over 50% higher than that of last fiscal year (ended March 20, 2018), which stood at around 450,000 bpd.

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