Iranian crude exports will reach its lowest level in July, a five-month low, as purchases of the ultra-light oil by Asian refiners, especially South Korea, decreased, Reuters reported.
As refineries in Asia replace the ultra-light oil with cheaper naphtha, Iranian condensate exports are expected to fall by 38% to about 252,000 b/d in July, Trade Arabia wrote. The volume destined for South Korea in July is expected to fall to 84,000b/d from a record high in June, as key buyer SK Energy also switched to process cheaper naphtha.
Nonetheless, the start-up of new and existing splitters in Asia and the Middle East is expected to drive demand for Iranian condensate again later in Q3 of 2016.
In June, loadings of Iranian condensate rose to about 408,000 b/d, the highest volume since sanctions on Iranian oil exports were lifted in January, as high demand for condensate, from South Korea in particular, helped drive an Iranian export recovery.
Earlier in May, Iranian Oil Minister, Bijan Zangeneh, announced that Iran’s oil and gas condensate exports have reached 2.45mb/d, affirming that there was no obstacle for Iran to seek regaining its lost share in the oil market.