Russian crude cargo unloaded in Ghana after 6-week wait.

Russian crude cargo unloaded in Ghana after 6-week wait.

According to ship-tracking data compiled by Bloomberg on Monday, Ghana has just received its first cargo of Russian crude in at least four years after an oil tanker that had been waiting for permission to dock for six weeks was allowed to discharge the oil this weekend. 

Data from Marine Traffic shows that the Theseus petroleum tanker was in the Gulf of Guinea on Monday. 

At the end of January, a tanker filled with crude oil thought to be from Russia sailed from the Black Sea port of Novorossiysk. At the end of February, it approached the coastlines of Ghana, but it had been anchored offshore while it awaited authorization to dock and unload its cargo. 

According to Bloomberg, the tanker’s 600,000 barrels of crude oil from Novorossiysk to Ghana represented the first delivery from Russia to the African nation in at least four years. Sources claimed that concerns over national security were to blame for the six-week delay. According to a source with knowledge of the incident, Ghana had permitted the vessel to dock after hearing that the crude oil was from Kazakhstan. However, data from tanker tracking companies and a port agency for Novorossiysk indicated that the vessel was transporting crude oil from Russia. 

According to local energy experts, the buyer of the cargo, who is thought to be Platon Gas Oil Ghana Ltd, will store the oil in storage tanks it has leased from the Tema oil refinery, where the cargo was delivered this weekend, and is not expected to process the crude for at least six months. 

After the EU placed restrictions on the seaborne imports of Russia’s oil and fuels, Russia turned to Africa in addition to Asia to export more of its crude oil. Ghana in West Africa may be an unusual location for Russian oil purchases, but once the EU embargo on the import of Russian fuels went into effect in early February, countries in North Africa have emerged as important markets for Russia’s diesel and other petroleum products.

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