US Sanctions LPG Carrier, Chinese Firms Targeting Iranian Oil
The United States continues its efforts to target shipping companies and vessels involved in the Iranian petrochemical and oil trade today targeting companies in China, Hong Kong and Singapore as well as brokers involved in the trade. The US Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) has announced that it is taking action against companies used by Iran to facilitate the sale of tens of millions of dollars of Iranian petroleum and petrochemical products from Iran. Iran to East Asia. The move comes despite a recent setback in Greece in a bid to enforce sanctions.
Announcing the latest round of companies listed by the State Department, Undersecretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson linked the actions to failed progress in nuclear talks. Iranian. “The United States continues to follow the path of diplomacy to achieve a mutual return to full implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. Until Iran is ready to return to full implementation implementation of its commitments, we will continue to apply sanctions against the illicit sale of Iranian oil and petrochemicals.
The actions specifically targeted Iran’s Persian Gulf Petrochemical Industry Commercial Co., one of the country’s largest petrochemical brokers. According to the State Department, the company, which is a subsidiary of Iranian petrochemical conglomerate Persian Gulf Petrochemical Industry Co., is part of an operation that accounts for half of all of Iran’s petrochemical exports.
A ship, the Harvest of Glory, was cited in today’s shares, a 25-year-old LPG carrier built in South Korea. The vessel is currently registered in Panama and linked to Golden Warrior Shipping Co., with offices in Shandong, China, and Hong Kong. The United States did not cite the ship’s specific operations, but according to its AIS data, it has been in China since June. According to brokers, the 7,200 dwt vessel was previously in Pakistan unloading cargo and is currently up for sale at an asking price of $4.95 million. The vessel is now listed as U.S. blocked property
The department also names Golden Warrior Shipping, Co. They claim that the company has engaged in transactions related to Iranian oil and petroleum products, including providing logistical support for the Iranian oil trade. Additionally, Singapore-based Pioneer Ship Management was listed for serving as the ship’s commercial manager when transporting Iranian petroleum products.
The sanctions also targeted a series of companies that the State Department has linked to various transactions. In addition to UAE-based Blue Cactus Heavy Equipment and Machinery Spare Parts Trading, which the United States claims Iran used to facilitate the sale of millions of dollars of Iranian-sourced petroleum products, they have targeted companies based in China and Asia. PZNFR Trading Limited, based in Hong Kong and Malaysia, reportedly raised millions of dollars in sales proceeds while Farwell Canyon HK Limited, based in Jordan and China, acted as a broker and facilitator.
Iran, however, in the past has mocked the sanctions saying they do little to stop the oil trade. Last month, Greece’s Supreme Court failed to overturn a lower court ruling that released a shipment of crude oil from Iran. The United States won initial approval from Greek courts to seize the cargo after it sanctioned the tanker in February 2022 for its involvement in the Iranian oil trade. The tanker, the Lana, remains at the Piraeus anchorage awaiting the return of the cargo which was partially transhipped when the United States obtained initial approval to claim the cargo. Iran continues to detain two Greek oil tankers which it seized in retaliation for the confiscation of the crude oil cargo.