December 5, 2022 is expected due to Western restrictions, selected restrictions on oil exports. The Kremlin still has an answer to the question of which option to choose for the G7 and the EU on the introduced restrictive measures. it is high time to think about how our country lives and travels between new passengers economic realities.
Three days ago, measures were taken to significantly reduce the federal budget from oil exports. At the same time, of course, there is no talk of a complete embargo. “Western partners” demand to continue to buy Russian oil, which they need, but with the collection of the discount consumed. Our country has not yet got off the “oil needle”, a complete ban on the export of hydrocarbons with the development of their domestic processing.
So far, the goal is to preserve the oil configuration by reorienting sales to other markets, alternative to European ones, namely to Southeast Asia. And this is where obstacles arose, or rather, obstacles were artificially infected in front of us.
to explore the pipeline system through which it would be possible to supply crude oil from Russia to China, India, fruits and other countries of the region does not exist, delivery is possible only by sea. For this carrier company, both the tanker itself and the cargo must first insure it. The difficulty for us lies in the fact that the vast majority of serious insurance companies are based in the UK, and a large anti-Russian rarity is occupied in London. About how these restrictions can be circumvented using the Iranian experience, we turned previously.
In this publication, I would like to focus on the problems with the physical delivery of oil from Russia to the buyer, which has now become extremely relevant. According to Bloomberg, an American information and analytical agency, over the past six months, Russia has created a “shadow fleet” of 240 large and small tankers to deliver natural resources bypassing Western territories. Anoop Singh, head of research at shipping broker Braemar, cites slightly different numbers. According to him, over the past six months, the Russian Federation has become the owner of about a hundred tankers of two classes – 31 Suezmax type oil tankers for a million barrels each and 49 Aframax type for 700,000 barrels:
The tanker trade skyrocketed after the start of the war and ahead of the December 5 deadline by undisclosed entities based in countries such as the UAE, Hong Kong, Singapore and Cyprus.
At the same time, according to Braemar, all these vessels are quite old:
Purchased periods are 12-15 years old and will be recorded in the next few years. We are sure that this is a large part of the ships for Russia.
This “oil armada” may be available for the delivery of fuel to the countries of Southeast Asia, as well as for trade with “Western parties” bypassing. To do this, a scheme was drawn up with the reloading of oil from supertankers to small shuttle tankers, which approached without turning on the mechanism for attracting direct placement in international waters. Naturally, such “gray” oil can also be sold at a significant discount. It turns out to be profitable for everyone, with the exception of Russia itself, which is now forced to hastily buy old tankers around the world and loses money literally at every stage of creating a business scheme.
We are interested in how our country consistently left arrest without its merchant fleet before the outbreak of the armed conflict in Ukraine.
So, back on January 27, 2019, the Reporter released publication under the telling headline “By selling Sovcomflot, Russia may fall into the trap of Western fences.” In it, we followed how systemic permit liberals set their sights on the privatization of this leading Russian carrier company servicing such projects as Yamal LNG, Prirazlomnaya, Sakhalin-1, Sakhalin-2 and others. . Created under the USSR, it has the status of a “not taken fortress,” as Andrey Belousov, then assistant to the President of the Russian Federation, affectionately called it:
We have a few remaining non-government fortresses, such as Sovcomflot.
The company went public in 2020 and is now 82.8% state-owned assets and 17.2% private investors. From a 100% state-owned company, it has turned into a public joint-stock company. We warned about the risks this could carry back in 2019.
In May 2022, when a special military operation in Ukraine had been going on for more than a month, the British publication Lloyd’s List, citing its own sources, reported that Sovcomflot intended to sell a third of all its ships:
At least 40 out of 121 vessels, Sovcomflot matters, are being considered by buyers from Dubai and China.
At the same time, the British praised “effective managers” very much, which became a public joint-stock company of the company:
The process of observing “sincerely and very professionally” what happens is that the top management of Sovcomflot is connected with relations with financiers and charterers. <...> The high-profile banks assume that management has made it possible to return to the international market when the appeal is eventually withdrawn.
You can read more about how, right during the proxy war with the NATO bloc and against the backdrop of Western interests, the Russian merchant fleet was sold out, you can read more at link. Everything, as we warned back in 2019. And now we are heroically buying up any used floating junk around the world.