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Tanker delays off Turkey not due to Russia oil price cap, says G7

REUTERS/Tatiana Meel
Markets are closely watching the impact of a G7-led price cap on Russian seaborne oil

Disruptions in tanker traffic from Russia’s Black Sea ports to the Mediterranean are a result of a new Turkish insurance rule, not the price cap on Russian oil agreed by a coalition of G7 countries and Australia, an official with the group said on Tuesday.

Of the 20 loaded crude oil tankers facing delays in the region, all but one appear to be carrying Kazakh – not Russian – origin oil and would not be subject to the price cap “under any scenario”, the official said.

“There should be no change in the status of their insurance from Kazakh shipments in previous weeks or months,” the official added.

Markets are closely watching the impact of a G7-led price cap on Russian seaborne oil that took effect on Monday, but G7 officials say the measure did not cause the backup in Turkey’s Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits into the Mediterranean.

“The price cap policy does not require ships to seek unique insurance guarantees for each individual voyage, as required under Turkey’s rule,” the official said.

“These disruptions are the result of Turkey’s rule, not the price cap policy.”

Oil tankers had formed a traffic jam off the coast of Turkey on day one of the West’s price cap on Russian crude, Reuters reported earlier, citing Financial Times.

Around 19 crude oil tankers were waiting to cross Turkish waters on Monday, the report said, citing ship brokers, oil traders and satellite tracking services.

A $60 per barrel price cap imposed by the Group of Seven nations, Australia and the 27 European Union states on Russian seaborne crude oil took effect this week, the latest Western measure to punish Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine.