Nearly 10 mln liters of diesel smuggled out of Iran per day: deputy minister

Nearly 10 mln liters of diesel smuggled out of Iran per day: deputy minister

23 Apr 2023 ( The Star )

Iranian deputy oil minister Jalil Salari said an average of nearly 10 million liters of diesel are smuggled out of the Islamic republic per day due to its competitive price.

Salari, who is also the managing director of the National Iranian Oil Refining and Distribution Company (NIORDC), made the remarks in an interview with Iran’s official news agency IRNA, which was published on Saturday.

The price for one liter of diesel in Iran is around 0.8 U.S. dollars less than that of its surrounding countries, he said, adding that the differences in diesel prices between Iran and its neighbors have made smuggling an alluring activity.

According to Salari, daily consumption of diesel in the country’s transportation sector now stands at 84 million liters, while it is estimated that the figure should not exceed 75 million liters per day.

To stop diesel smuggling, Iran has promoted the use of personal fuel cards and upgraded smart systems in order to exercise greater control over the monetary transactions and identify suspicious transactions, said Salari.

Sitting on one of the world’s biggest oil and gas reserves, Iran refines more than 2.2 million barrels of crude oil and condensates at its 10 refineries every day. The country’s daily output of diesel and gasoline hit 110 and 115 million liters respectively, Salari noted.

The Iranian government subsidizes the use of fuel, making fuel smuggling a lucrative business. Over the past few months, Iranian naval forces have seized a large number of ships for carrying smuggled fuel.