Reduced Iranian crude oil imports raise hopes
The government is hopeful that the US will grant Sri Lanka a
concession to import crude oil from Iran as the country has succeeded in
slashing Iranian oil imports by 24 percent this year. Sri Lanka has
reduced the number of crude oil despatches to be delivered this year
from Iran to 10 from 13 by switching to fuel from Oman and Saudi Arabia.
The government will purchase one cargo despatch of crude oil weighing
135,000Mt from Oman and another two from Saudi Arabia slashing Iranian
oil imports by 24 percent.
Petroleum Ministry sources said the United States has granted this
concession to Japan and the European Union for slashing their oil
imports from Iran by 15 percent and the government expects that Sri
Lanka would receive this facility from the US.
Ministry sources said the country’s only refinery at Sapugaskanda can
process light crude oil similar to Iran. The oil refinery has also
processed light crude oil from Saudi Arabia and Malaysia too.
The refinery can process only 13 cargos this year as it is closed for
a month in two years for maintenance.
The ministry official said the refinery will be closed from July to
August for maintenance.
“The ministry has made arrangements to purchase the country’s oil
requirement for next year too.
We hope that the country would require 16 cargos of crude oil next
year as the refinery is not closed for maintenance next year,” he said.
He said the country would be able to fulfil its fuel requirements, if
the US offer a waiver of sanctions to purchase oil from Iran.
The US imposes sanctions on countries failing to stop oil related
transaction with Iran’s Central Bank from June this year.