By Zulfugar Agayev (Bloomberg) Exports of Azerbaijan’s oil from Turkey are unlikely to resume this week because a control room at the port of Ceyhan suffered earthquake damage, according to a person familiar with the matter.
The eastern Mediterranean terminal stopped loadings on Monday, when two earthquakes killed more than 15,000 people and destroyed masses of buildings.
Ceyhan normally handles around 1 million barrels a day of crude, almost 60% of it from Azerbaijan and the rest from Iraq.
The control room for Azeri shipments was damaged and there’s no fixed timeline for a restart, according to a port agent.
Loadings are unlikely until late next week, another person said after receiving a preliminary estimate from an equity holder in a pipeline running to the port.
BP Plc, which has a 30.1% stake in the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline from Azerbaijan to Ceyhan, earlier said an assessment at the port was still happening. A company spokesperson wouldn’t comment on when Azeri shipments would restart or on whether there was any damage.
Ceyhan was meant to export around 580,000 barrels a day this month from BTC, according to a loading program. Other partners include Azerbaijan’s state energy company Socar, Mol Nyrt, Eni SpA and TotalEnergies SE.
Azerbaijan authorities are expected to begin using another terminal called Supsa on the Black Sea in the coming days, according to Tribeca Shipping.
Supsa can handle less Azeri oil than Ceyhan. The pipeline running to the port, which has been closed since May, has a capacity of 145,000 barrels a day.
One of three bays at Ceyhan handling oil from Iraq, which comes via a separate pipeline, resumed operations on Tuesday evening and a ship was loading crude from the region of Kurdistan. Iraq sends roughly 450,000 barrels a day to Ceyhan.
Iraq’s full-month exports from the port won’t be affected, according to an official with knowledge of the matter.
The pipelines serving Ceyhan were closed for inspections after the quakes but restarted a day later. The port has almost 20 storage tanks with a combined capacity of roughly 17 million barrels.
In another blow for regional supply, oil production from Kazakhstan has been curtailed by unplanned maintenance at the nation’s Tengiz field. The country’s output has fallen by about 200,000 barrels a day, government data show.
By Zulfugar Agayev and Sherry Su, with assistance from Julian Lee and Alex Longley. © 2023 Bloomberg L.P.
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