Citigroup also has a similar estimate on Iran’s floating storage. In a Monday note, the bank said Iran may have around 65 million barrels of oil stored at sea, plus an additional 54 million barrels stored on land.
The United States and Iran have had indirect talks in Vienna since last month on possible ways for the two countries to return to the so-called Iran nuclear deal. US President Joe Biden has signaled his willingness to return to the nuclear deal, but only if Iran returns to full respect for its nuclear activities. Iran, for its part, has said it will only start complying with the nuclear deal after the United States lifts sanctions on Tehran.
The official meeting of the Joint Commission of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), marking the start of the fifth round of the Vienna talks, begins on Tuesday, May 25, Mikhail Ulyanov, who heads the Russian delegation to the talks, tweeted early Tuesday, adding in a response to a question that this could be the last round of talks.
In the event that an agreement is reached, and after the lifting of US sanctions, Iran could deliver oil “to major export markets, including India and China, within 10 to 20 days”, Citigroup said in its Monday note, carried by Bloomberg.
Still, Iranian floating crude will not be cleared overnight after the lifting of US sanctions, Gibson Shipbrokers research chief Richard Matthews told Bloomberg. Payment channels must also be cleared, along with all other formalities before buyers regain confidence that they would legitimately buy Iranian oil. Therefore, phasing out Iran’s crude oil reserve will likely take months with activity gradually ramping up, Matthews told Bloomberg.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for OilUSD
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