Iran is seeking to increase the country’s capacity to store gasoline, and has begun to empty crude oil storage tanks in readiness, according to the state-owned Mehr News Agency.
Mehr reports that SEO of Iranian Oil Pipelines and Telecommunication Company (IOPTC) North District, Arsalan Rahimi, announced on 31 May that 770,000 bbl of crude was sent to the Tehran oil refinery from the Neka oil terminal in northern Iran, via the Neka-Rey 32-inch pipeline.
Rahimi told the news agency that the IOPTC and the Iranian oil ministry have a policy to create new storage capacity for gasoline.
Mehr suggests that the gasoline is for export to Venezuela, an important trading partner for Iran. In the past week, Iran had the capacity to export 1.53m bbl of gasoline and alkylate to Venezuela, which is currently suffering from a fuel crisis under US sanctions. In February 2019, the country became self-sufficient in gasoline production, and in December 2019, as a result of a rationing scheme, spokesman Hamid Hosseini of the Iranian Oil, Gas and Petrochemical Products Exporters’ Union announced that Iran could export 25m-30m l/d (157,000-189,000 bbl) of fuel.