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Web alert: Nigeria blacklists crude oil tankers

28 July 2015

On 15 July 2015, a letter was issued by Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), banning 113 oil tankers from entering Nigerian territorial waters and oil facilities. The letter is addressed to Nigerian terminal operators, with the tankers affected named in the attached list to the right. It is understood that this list may not be entirely accurate with some ship’s names and IMO numbers having been misstated, while it is also noted that the list may not be exhaustive and further ships may be added.

The current list includes ships that have not recently traded in Nigerian waters or at all and it is not clear at this stage for the basis of the ban. However, there has been some suggestion that the reason for the targeting may be due to a failure to provide official outturn figures at last call and/or commercial differences between load and discharge figures for cargo and free water. The club understands that the imposing of the ban may also be politically motivated as a result of new government initiatives by recently elected President Buhari.

Many of the tankers on the banned list are operated by members the International Association of Independent Tanker Operators (INTERTANKO), who represent the interests of independent tanker owners worldwide. The club understands that INTERTANKO have urged the NNPC to explain the basis of the ban and what operators may do in order to be removed from the list.

Members trading in Nigerian waters should therefore be alert to these developments. The club continues to monitor developments and will provide the necessary support to our members intending to trade in this region. Should any questions arise, members are encouraged to contact their usual club contact or the author of this web alert.