Source: Press TV
A new report points to Saudi Arabia's attempts to hinder Iran's efforts to regain its market share of the global oil trade. The Financial Times report on Monday said Saudi Arabia has been banning vessels that transport Iranian crude from entering their waters.
An Iranian oil tanker (file photo)
The report citing traders and shipbrokers said Iranian oil tankers are restricted from entering ports in Saudi Arabia and Bahrain.
The FT added that a circular by a shipping insurance company to its members in February said vessels that have called to Iran as one of its last three ports of entry would also require approval from Saudi and Bahraini authorities before entering their waters.
Shipbrokers and traders have relayed the same messages ever since.
The British daily further pointed out though that oil tanker association Intertanko and other industry participants say no formal notice has been given by Saudi Arabia; yet uncertainty is making some charterers less willing to help lift Iranian crude.
Under last July's nuclear agreement with the permanent UN Security Council members plus Germany (P5+1), Iran was allowed to resume crude exports to Europe and other destinations in return for some curbs on Tehran's nuclear program.
Since the lifting of sanctions earlier this year, Iran has managed to increase foreign sales of crude but still seeks to regain its global market share.
This is while oil producing countries have been trying to freeze the global output over slumping prices and a market glut.
Iranian officials have recently said the country had raised its crude oil exports to 1.7 million barrels per day (bpd), but it faced challenges for returning to pre-sanctions levels when the country sold 2.5 million barrels.
The oil market is saturated amid oversupply by major producers such as Saudi Arabia.
The kingdom is currently pushing for a production freeze provided that other oil producing nations stop their output at current levels.
Major global oil producers are set to discuss plans to freeze output on April 17.
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