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Monday, January 28, 2013
Emirates National Oil replaces Iran with Qatari supplies

ENOC replaces Iran with Qatari supplies
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The Peninsula - 28 January, 2013
http://gitm.kcorp.net/index.php?id=632075&news_type=Economy&lang=en

Emirates National Oil Co (ENOC) has started importing condensate from Qatar
to replace sanctioned Iranian oil and is close to finalising deals with
other producers, the Dubai government-owned company said yesterday.

ENOC was the biggest buyer of Iranian condensate in 2012 when its imports
rose to an average of 127,000bpd, up from 106,000bpd in 2011, despite US
pressure to stop the trade.

US officials have for months been leaning on ENOC to find alternative
sources for a refinery which provides the city’s two million mainly
expatriate residents with cheap fuel.

ENOC, which needs to import oil because Dubai’s crude production is too
meagre to satisfy thousands of gas-guzzling vehicles’ fuel thirst, has now
begun importing the light oil from nearby U.S. ally Qatar and is scouring
the globe for more.

“ENOC has already started importing condensates from Qatar to meet the
current local market demand,” ENOC said in a statement.

“With oil price volatility continuing to have a bearing on financial bottom
lines, along with increased demand for petroleum products and the shortage
of imported condensates from Iran because of the applied economic sanctions,
we are evaluating various sources for condensate for our refinery.”

ENOC said it was currently finalising contracts with other leading
condensate producers in the region to meet its fuel needs over the next few
years.

US ally Saudi Arabia, a significant condensate seller, has complained that
ENOC’s trade undermines sanctions against its Opec rival Iran.

US and European sanctions have slashed Iran’s crude export revenues in a bid
to force Tehran to drop a nuclear programme that Washington and Brussels
fear is designed to develop weapons, charges Iran denies.

Last summer, Washington tightened controls on financial transactions for
importing Iranian condensate, a light oil.

But ENOC, which loses millions of dollars a year selling subsidised fuel at
Dh1.72 ($ 0.47) a litre, increased its Iranian oil imports last year because
cheaper Iranian supplies helped lessen the burden of selling gasoline at
below cost.

ENOC did not give any details of the price it has agreed to pay Qatar, one
of the world’s largest condensate producers, or identify other producers it
is in talks with.

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