EghtesadOnline: South Korea resumed imports of Iranian oil in January after a four-month hiatus, customs data showed on Friday, but shipments were down 76% from the same month last year.
The world’s fifth-largest crude importer won a six-month waiver in November from US sanctions on Tehran’s oil exports, but did not immediately start imports, mainly due to payment and insurance issues, Reuters reported.
South Korea, one of Iran’s biggest Asian customers, imported 227,941 tons of Iranian crude in January, or 53,676 barrels per day, data from the country’s customs office showed. This was well down on 950,013 tons of Iranian crude a year earlier, Financial Tribune reported.
Overall, South Korea shipped in 12.46 million tons of crude oil in January, or 2.94 million bpd, down 5.9 % from 13.25 million tons from a year earlier, according to the customs data.
Oil shipments from Saudi Arabia, the country’s top oil supplier, fell 4.8 % to 3.51 million tons in January year on year, as the kingdom continued to curb its output under a supply deal led by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.
In January, OPEC’s oil output fell by about 800,000 bpd to 30.81 million bpd, and the biggest supply drop came from Saudi Arabia.