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Iran seeks new oil swap opportunities with Caspian states

May 14/ 10:30

Tehran. Iran seeks new oil swap opportunities with Caspian Sea littoral states, Seyed Pirouz Mousavi, managing director of National Iranian Oil Terminals Company (NIOTC), told Trend.

Iran is currently swapping oil with Turkmenistan, Mousavi said, adding that Iran considers to attract other littoral states to swap as well.

Last August Iran confirmed that has received several oil cargoes from Turkmenistan in the Neka port, saying the volume is planed to reach 200,000 b/d in 2018.

The unloaded oil at Neka port is transferred in stages through the 32-inch Neka-Sari-Rey oil pipeline to be used in Tabriz and Tehran refineries, located in northern Iran, and the same amount of Iranian oil is delivered to swap partner in Persian Gulf.

At the moment, the pipeline and the related facilities have capacity to transfer 370,000 barrels of crude oil per day, however it can be increased to 500,000 barrels, according to Iranian officials.

Mousavi said that Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Russia are the next countries that Iran targets to resume oil swap with them.

He further said that the Islamic Republic is negotiating with these countries, adding that "we enjoy the capacity to resume oil swap with our neighbors in the Caspian Sea and are determined to use this capability."

Iran stopped oil swaps with Caspian countries eight years ago after over one decade of operations which brought $880 million in revenues to Iran.

Under the oil swap agreements, which started in 1997 and were in place for over 12 years, Iran received crude oil of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan in the Neka port and delivered an equal volume to the clients of the same countries in the Persian Gulf.

Earlier in March Iran's Minister of Economic Affairs and Finance Masoud Karbasian said Tehran and Baku have agreed on eight documents on cooperation, including the swap of oil and gas.

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