Mainly, Maritime Authority of Panama removed from its registry 59 vessels that were linked to Iran, according to ShareAmerica, the US State Department-run platform.

From the 59 vessels, at least 21 Iranian-owned tankers had their registration revoked, Reuters reported.

This move is to hamper Iranian efforts to ship oil to ports and terminals on a global scale.


Moreover, Iran has 65 tankers in its fleet, the majority out of which belong to the National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC). Most of them belong to vessels older than ten years.

In attempts to compete with global players and increase onshore storage capability, Iranian companies allegedly look for ways to increase their tanker fleet by purchases and newbuilding orders. However, the progress on fleet expansion has been slowed down due to the sanctions.

Reimposed in November 2018, the sanctions target Iranian entities, vessels, and individuals and have the ultimate aim of compelling Iran to permanently abandon its outlaw activities.

The Panamanian ship registry is the largest in the world, with more than 7,000 vessels flying the flag of this country.

Due to the US sanctions, Iranian oil has faced many barriers, as it is expected that India will buy 12% less Iranian oil in April. In the meantime, in December 2018, South Korea didn't import Iranian oil because of the US sanctions, leaving Iran deal with many challenges.