A Russian Oil Tanker Arrives in Cuba with 700,000 Barrels of Fuel

The Russian tanker “Suvorovsky Prospect” (Maritime Optima/Lennart Rydberg)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Havana, 14 July 2022 — In the midst of the harsh sanctions imposed by the West on Russia after the invasion of Ukraine and the deep energy crisis that Cuba is experiencing, a Russian tanker loaded with fuel arrived on the island on Thursday.

According to Reuters, the oil tanker Suvorovsky Prospect, with the flag of Liberia, arrived at the port of Matanzas with about 700,000 barrels of fuel, loaded in the Russian port of Ust-Luga. The tanker brings supplies for Cuban power plants and gives Russia “a way out for products rejected by the West,” the British agency explains in its note.

The cargo has a value of about 70 million dollars according to the current price of the product on the market, and the ship is owned by a unit of the main Russian shipping conglomerate Sovcomflot, according to the Equasis maritime database.

Sovcomflot is under British, Canadian and American sanctions, and its fleet lost insurance backed by Western companies as a result of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which now has gone on for almost five months. Europe and the United Kingdom are moving forward, Reuters says, towards an embargo on imports of Russian crude oil, scheduled for the end of this year.

The Russian oil tanker alleviates a desperate situation on the island, where fuel shortages are experienced in the main cities. In Havana, the official press reports every day on the availability of products at the gas stations the capital.

Most of the oil that reaches Cuba comes from Venezuela, which, according to Reuters, sent 66,400 barrels per day to the island in June.

In May, exports collapsed due to the changes introduced by the state-owned PDVSA, which requires prepayment for cargo as a result of the non-payment of some buyers. In May, the amounts that arrived in Cuba, which doesn’t pay the charges for the agreements with Venezuela, weren’t made public, but in April it was 32,000 barrels per day.

Translated by Regina Anavy


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