Iran’s oil exports to South Korea rose to 1.4 million tons for the month of July, a 26.5% year-on-year increase from the 1.1 million tons it exported to South Korea in July 2016, Reuters reports.
During the first seven months of 2017, Iranian exports to South Korea recorded a 47.7% increase from the same period in 2016, rising to 10.67 million tons from 7.22 million tons in 2016. Altogether, Iran’s exports to Asia rose by 100,000 barrels per day (bpd) during the month of July, according to Reuters.
This higher export volume has been boosted by higher demand in South Korea and cutbacks by rival producers.
South Korea imported 84.68 million tons of crude in the first seven months of the year, a 2% increase from the 83.04 million tons it imported during the same timeframe in 2016, according to Reuters.
Even as Iran moves to meet this growing demand by boosting its exports to Asia, Saudi Arabia is cutting back.
Saudi Arabia’s exports to South Korea in July dropped to 3.69 million tons, a 9.3% year-on-year decrease from last year, Reuters reports.
The leading OPEC producer has also indicated that exports will be slashed further. Industry sources indicate that Saudi Aramco, Saudi Arabia’s state-owned oil company, will cut exports to Asia by 10% in September, CNBC reports.
In addition to increasing imports of crude oil from Iran, South Korea has been expanding its economic activities in the country. A South Korean firm, SK Engineering & Construction Company, recently partnered with Iran’s Tabriz Oil Refinery to carry out a $1.6 billion modernization project for the Tabriz Refinery, Reuters previously reported.