Tankers with Iranian crude oil reached Gdańsk

VLCC Atlantas arrived in the Gdańsk - based Naftoport on August 15, 2016. Photo: Naftoport
VLCC Atlantas arrived in the Gdańsk – based Naftoport on August 15, 2016.
Photo: Naftoport

Atlantas and Calida tankers, together transporting 2m barrels (almost 300,000 tonnes) of Iranian crude oil for Grupa Lotos, reached the Nafroport in Gdańsk on Monday morning, August 15 and started to pump the material. The operation was expected to take about 30 hours.

Atlantas sailed 12,000 nautical miles, which is over a half length of the equator, and circled Africa on its way. Such tanker has too big draught to sail through the Suez Cana. It started from a handling terminal on the Iranian island Chark located in the Persian Gulf. When Atlantas reached the Danish straits, due to draft limits it had to reload around 700.000 of barrels on a the Calida tanker before entering the Baltic Sea.

The oil from both tankers will be transported to Lotos and PERN containers via pipelines. After that, it will be processed at refinery in Gdańsk. It is the first supply of the Iranian crude oil after a number of years.

As the spokesman of Grupa Lotos, Marcin Zachowicz, said on Monday morning, the material from Iran will be processed separately (in normal conditions several kinds of oil are mixed) in order to collect detailed data for the further technological and economical analysis.

The company emphasises that this is a single test supply.

– What will happen next is dependent on the quality of oil along with the results of its processing and economical effect – Zachowicz explains.

The Atlantas supertanker entered the Nafroport on the basis of the agreement between Grupa Lotos S.A. and the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC). It is the result of works aimed at boosting diversification of the strategic resources supplies and enhancing Poland’s energy security.

– Lotos is interested in every reasonable cooperation in the field of crude oil supplies for refinery in Gdańsk – said earlier Robert Pietryszyn, CEO of Grupa Lotos SA. – We enhance Poland’s energy security thanks to using various sources of supplies and investing in our own deposits – he underlined.

Atlantas and Calida ship-to-ship transfer. Photo: press release
Atlantas and Calida ship-to-ship transfer.
Photo: press release

The company reminds that the refinery in Gdańsk has been designed to process the crude oil from the Middle East. In the 1980s and 1990s the refinery processed around 75m barrels (over 10m tonnes) of the Iranian oil.

“We are technologically prepared to process virtually all kinds of oil, including those coming from Iran, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, the United Arab Emirates or Kuwait. There are around 200 kinds of oil in our base and this number is gradually increasing “, the company states.

Zachowicz explains that, as a target, the company wants to choose a few kinds to create a mix that would give the company the greatest possible benefits. The spokesman of Lotos said that in the first quarter of this year, 25 per cent of the material that has been processed in the refinery did not come from Russia. It was oil from Baltic and Lithuanian deposits and from PGNiG plant in Lubiatów.

Last year, the refinery in Gdańsk processed 10.2m tonnes of oil. 7.8m tonnes (77 per cent) came from Russia, and the other 2.3.m from other sources.

As the company stated, from 2m barrels of oil Lotos can produce 61.5m litres of petrol and 116m litres of diesel oil. Such quantity of fuel allows to refuel 3.2m passenger cars, which is the number of registered cars in Masovian Voivodeship (where the Poland’s capitol Warsaw is situated).

Atlantas tanker flying the flag of Liberia is 333 m long, 60.5 m width, 66 m high and its carrying capacity is 319,000 tonnes (DWT). The unit is a VLCC (Very Large Crude Carrier) tanker and it is among the largest crude carriers. It is also one of the largest tankers that have ever called at Naftoport. The ship was built in 2010 in Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering (DSME) shipyard in the South Korea.

Read also: Iran wants to cooperate with Polish shipyards and refineries

As Jan Milczewski, the Fuel Depot Officer explained, the tanker tied up in Gdańsk using its self-drive and several tugs.

– In the case of this tanker, the unload rate will be from 9 to 10 thousand of cubic meters per hour (…), and its stay in Gdańsk should not be longer than 30-36 hours – he informed. He also said that, according to Atlantas schedule, it will enter the Northern Port again in a few days and will be filled with export oil, probably Russian.

Grupa Lotos is the second largest Polish oil company involved in the exploration and production of crude oil, its processing and wholesale and retail sale of high-quality petroleum products. The Group holds more than 30 percent market shares in the wholesale fuel market and almost 10 percent in the retail market.


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