Cargo ships pass through the Bosphorus, a body of water connecting the Black Sea with the Sea of Marmara and the Mediterranean through Istanbul, Turkey. Above, the Russian-flagged Volga River Taganrog tanker sails south through the Bosphorus in October 2022.
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Kazakh tankers laden with oil are experiencing delays in transit through the Bosphorus as Turkey presents new evidence of insurance measures for Russian tankers currently being followed. EU sanctions and G7 country price caps.
Kazakhstan’s oil travels by pipeline through Russia and is loaded onto tankers at the port of Novorossiysk. Officials can track the origin of the oil on the bill of lading.
“It appears that all but one of about 20 crude tankers waiting to cross the strait are carrying oil originating from Kazakhstan,” a price-limiting official told CNBC. “These goods will not be price-capped in any scenario and there will be no change in their coverage status for Kazakh shipments in the previous weeks or months,” the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. know. of geopolitical issues.
Based on the number of ships, more than 20 million barrels of oil or $1.2 billion are trapped.
Turkey’s new insurance rules for Russian crude oil tankers have slowed tanker operations off the coast of Turkey and between Russia’s Black Sea ports and the Mediterranean since the start of the week. when the price ceiling and the sanctions first took effect.
Andrew Lipow, president of Lipow Oil Associates, said if delays increase, refineries will look for alternative supplies from other countries or they will reduce operating capacity because there is not enough oil. This affects gasoline and diesel supplies.
“If this continues for another week, we will start to see an impact on the oil market,” Lipow said.
Buyers of Kazah oil include Asia, Europe and some US East Coast.
VesselsValue told CNBC that the average wait time for tankers at the Bosphorus has increased by about 47% from last week, when there were 14 vessels with an average waiting time of 64 hours and a total tonnage of 1.46 million tons. .
The Kazakh Ministry of Energy said in a statement on Thursday that waiting times were typical. “The waiting time in the Bosphorus and the Dardanelles is currently six days. For the winter this is a normal waiting time; last year, the wait time in the strait in December was about 14 days.”
MarineTraffic is monitoring the number of tankers waiting to pass through the Bosphorus. The company that uses AIS vessel tracking says the number of tankers waiting is now up to 40 and there are more than doubled in recent days.
“We can see a growing list of crude and chemical tankers waiting to pass through the Bosphorus from both sides, with multiple AIS destinations reported, including mainly Turkey and Russia. , there is also Ukraine, Georgia, Italy,” said Nikos Pothitakis, spokesman for Maritime Traffic “The ships in question are mainly flagged by the registries of Russia, Greece, Liberia and the Islands. Marshall.”
On Wednesday, US Under Secretary of the Treasury Wally Adeyemo spoke with Turkish Deputy Foreign Minister Sedat Onal to discuss the implementation of a price ceiling on Russian seaborne oil. Adeyemo stressed that the price cap regime applies only to oil of Russian origin and does not require additional checks on ships passing through Turkish territorial waters, according to a statement from the Finance Ministry. Both officials said a simple Turkish compliance mechanism that allows oil to be shipped by sea through the Turkish Strait would help keep global energy markets well-supplied.
“The price cap policy does not require ships to seek out unique coverages for each individual voyage, as is required under Turkish regulations,” the rate-limiting official told CNBC. “These disruptions are the result of Turkish rule, not a price-ceiling policy.”