Karachi, 27 June, 2023 (GNP): A discounted cargo of 55,000 tonnes of Russian crude oil has arrived at the Karachi port, marking the second shipment as part of a deal between Islamabad and Moscow.
The tanker, named ‘Clyde Noble’ carrying Russian Ural oil, will dock at the oil pier after finalizing the berthing plan. “The vessel is expected to arrive at Karachi Port by Tuesday,” an insider from the oil industry said earlier.
However, due to limited storage space at the Pakistan Refinery Limited (PRL), the cargo is arriving a week late from its scheduled arrival on June 20.
The first cargo of 45,000 tonnes of Russian crude oil arrived at the Karachi port on June 12, becoming the inaugural shipment under the government-led agreement.
Pakistan placed the initial order of 100,000 tonnes in April after negotiations between the two countries. However, logistical constraints forced the use of smaller ships for transportation as the Pakistani port could not handle larger vessels carrying more than 50,000 tonnes of oil cargo.
Moreover, the Russian crude oil, loaded on April 21 at a Russian port, experienced a 10-day delay due to technical issues before reaching Egypt’s Suez Canal on May 17, where it faced an additional 12-day wait in a long queue to cross the canal.
Pakistan imports approximately 70% of its crude oil, with major refineries like PRL, National Refinery Limited, Pak Arab Refinery Limited, and Byco Petroleum handling the refining process. Attock Refinery Limited locally produces the remaining 30% and refines it.
Currently, the PRL is blending Russian crude oil with Arabian crude to produce essential petroleum products. The arrival of Arabian crude followed an order from PRL to supplement the necessary oil for the refining process, insiders from the oil industry said.
Additionally, the continued shipments of Russian crude oil signify Pakistan’s efforts to diversify its oil imports and strengthen bilateral ties with Russia in the energy sector.