Iran threatened to block the Strait of Hormuz if it was not allowed to use the strategic waterway through which around a fifth of oil that is consumed globally passes. This came after the US announcement that it will end exemptions awarded last year to eight buyers of Iranian oil, demanding them to stop purchases by May 1 or face sanctions.
The US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on April 22 that the United States will end all exceptions for countries currently purchasing oil from Iran. As he specifically, said the country will no longer grant any exceptions. ‘We’re going to zero across the board’. Countries that had previously bought Iran’s crude oil have been transitioning to new suppliers.
Italy’s PB Tankers commented on OFAC’s decision to blacklist nine ships and four companies for breaching Venezuelan sanctions. The company stated that it’s shocked and concerned in OFAC’s action, in adding the company and a number of the company’s vessels to the current sanctions list in relation to trade with Venezuela. The company said in a release yesterday it will be taking immediate steps to ensure that it is delisted as a matter of urgency.
The US announced that it has designated a further nine vessels and four owning companies for involvement in the carriage of petroleum cargoes from Venezuela to Cuba. These sanctions cone a few days after the US blacklisted two shipping firms and their vessel for allegedly transporting oil from Venezuela to Cuba.
Steamship Mutual issued an advisory note on Wednesday, April 10, warning that US Treasury’s decision on blacklisting a Greek tanker demonstrates the agency’s willingness to interpret sanctions on Venezuela broadly, beyond the literal text of its rules – with potential implications for foreign tanker operators and oil traders.
The US Department of Treasury proceeded to black listing two shipping firms and many vessels, including one Greek tanker, in light of the US sanctions on Venezuela. The two blacklisted companies are Ballito Bay Shipping and ‘ProPer In Management Inc.’ of Athens, both sharing the same address in Piraeus.
On April 5, the US sanctioned two companies operating in Venezuela’s oil sector and one vessel used to transport oil to Cuba. Additional vessels, in which Venezuela’s state-owned oil company PDVSA has interests, are blocked property, according to Executive Order 13850. The US encouraged companies, banks, and other institutions not to provide services that support Maduro’s practices.
Prof. Dr. Dieter Schwampe, Partner at Arnecke Sibeth Dabelstein, IUMI Professional Partner, talks about the sanctions that are taking place around the world, regarding Iran. The start was made with the termination of the US participation from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), on 5 August 2018, with EU following by publishing the Blocking Regulation.
The US Department of the Treasury’s OFAC, the US Department of State and the US Coast Guard, updated information on North Korean sanctions, providing additional guidance on how to mitigate the risk of involvement in North Korea’s deceptive shipping practices.
The US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) updated its Advisory to the maritime petroleum shipping community, to highlight risks associated with shipments to Syria. This advisory updates a previous one on 20 November 2018.
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