An Iranian laborer walks the platform of an oil facility on Khark Island on March 12. (AFP)

By Arsalan Shahla

May 3, 2018

Iran’s crude exporters had a banner April, with shipments soaring to a record right before the possible re-imposition of U.S. 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, it said.

U.S. 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. China and India together took 1.4 million barrels a day from Iran in April, according to Shana.

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.

Bloomberg

About Track Persia

Track PersiaTrack Persia is a Platform run by dedicated analysts who spend much of their time researching the Middle East, in due process we fall upon many indications of growing expansionary ambitions on the part of Iran in the MENA region and the wider Islamic world. These ambitions commonly increase tensions and undermine stability.