Aframax oil tanker Icaro (IMO 9038842), operated by Venezuelan state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela, was approaching floating oil storage facility Nabarima on Tuesday October 20th, reported Reuters, citing Refinitiv Eikon data and an unnamed person familiar with the matter. The Icaro was expected to receive crude oil via an STS transfer. There had been environmental concerns that the storage facility could leak up to 1.3m barrels of oil into the sea.
The Nabarima oil facility is part of the Petrosucre joint venture between PDVSA and Italy’s Eni SpA. Published images showed the vessel tilting to its side.
Venezuela-flagged barge Inmaculada was also expected to participate in the STS operation, said Reuters.
Authorities in Trinidad and Tobago have said they planned to inspect the vessel, which is located in the Paria Gulf, that separates Venezuela and Trinidad & Tobago.
Petrosucre, which is 74% owned by PDVSA and 26% owned by Eni, suspended output shortly after the US sanctioned PDVSA in January 2019.
The sanctions deprived the company of its former main crude buyer, PDVSA’s US-based refining subsidiary, Citgo Petroleum Corp.
The United States in December 2019 placed additional sanctions on the Icaro, for delivering Venezuelan petroleum products to Cuba, one of President Nicolas Maduro’s main overseas allies.