Iranian-flagged tanker Forest, which is transporting fuel, has sailed round the Cape of Good Hope, reports Reuters, citing Refinitiv Eikon’s vessel tracking data. Citing unnamed sources with knowledge of the shipment, Reuters said that the ship was carrying about 300,000 barrels of fuel that was loaded at Iran’s Bandar Abbas terminal, and was bound for Venezuela.
Venezuela has a significant shortage of petrol due to insufficient domestic production. Long lines of vehicle drivers waiting to fill up at petrol stations have been observed.
Five fuel tankers were sent successfully to Venezuela between May and June, but a second set of four Liberia-flagged tankers saw their fuel seized by the US. The fuel is expected to be auctioned as part of the court action in the US.
Two other Iranian tankers of the same size that also loaded fuel in August, the Faxon and Fortune, have kept their transponders switched off since they set sail. Those vessels were understood to have been scheduled to sail through the Suez Canal earlier this month, but they did not pass on the scheduled date.