Turkey’s Oil Purchases From Iran Zeroed
TEHRAN - Turkey’s purchases of Iranian crude oil fell to zero in November, according to a source familiar with the matter, reflecting a decline in deals inked in the weeks leading up to renewed U.S. sanctions on Tehran.
Turkey has since been granted a waiver from Washington allowing it to temporarily continue buying Iranian oil despite the sanctions.
Oil arriving in Turkey from Iran is typically booked two or more weeks in advance because of the time it takes a shipment to cover the distance between the two countries by sea, Reuters reported.
A trading source said that Turkey’s biggest oil importer, TÜPRAS has also had scheduled maintenance from mid-October to mid-November at its Izmit refinery, one of four of the company’s refineries, a move that could have reduced its overall demand for crude oil during the period.
Turkey did not know in advance whether its request for a waiver would be granted, which may account for the decline in November purchases.
NATO member Turkey depends heavily upon imports to meet its energy needs and neighboring Iran has been one of its main sources of oil because of its proximity, the quality of its crude and favorable price differentials.
Turkey is one of the key destinations for Iranian crude, accounting for more than a quarter of Turkey’s daily average imports of around 830,000 barrels, according to data from the market regulator. While Turkey imported 930,978 tons of crude oil from Iran in May, the figure fell to 287,842 tons in June, according to the monthly petroleum industry report by the Energy Market Regulatory Authority (EMRA). In July and August, oil purchases from Iran totaled 867.3 million tons and
674.3 million tons, respectively.