August 28, 2008

Azerbaijan Starts Oil Exports Through Iran – Agency

Azerbaijan's state oil company SOCAR has started to deliver oil to world markets through Iran, the APA news agency has reported, quoting an unnamed source in the government.

According to a swap agreement reached with Iran, SOCAR will deliver nearly 300,000 t of oil to Iran's Caspian port of Neka in the next two months, and Iran will export the same volume of oil through the Persian Gulf. The Iranian National Oil Company has already received the first shipment of Azerbaijani oil, APA said.

The deal was prompted by the suspension of Azerbaijani oil deliveries to world markets through the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline and by rail following the explosion of a railway bridge in Georgia earlier this month, the report said.

The government source noted that the export of oil through Iran was temporary.

"These export operations are temporary. The transport of oil through Iran will continue until exports through the main existing routes are resumed at previous volumes," the source was quoted as saying.

Originally published by Azerbaijani news agency APA, Baku, in Azeri 1401 28 Aug 08.

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