June 24, 2024
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Vessel carrying Russian crude oil to Ghana loaded from Kazakhstan port

Official documents seen by JOY NEWS show that the vessel alleged to have shipped 600,000 barrels of Russian crude oil to Ghana had its port of loading in Kazakhstan.

Bloomberg first broke the story and tracked the vessel, MT Theseus “from a port in the Black Sea”.

JOY NEWS can now confirm the exact port of loading was Aktau, Kazakhstan.

Aktau, is a small city located on the eastern shore of the Caspian Sea with a port which had been expanded to receive and export larger and more diverse types of cargo notably, crude oil.

According to the United States International Trade Administration, Kazakhstan has the largest proven oil reserves in the Caspian Sea region. Its oil production reached 1.8 million barrels daily in 2021, and nearly 44 percent of the state budget’s revenues come from the oil and gas sector.

The certificate of quantity seen by JoyNews show that the shipper of the crude oil is the Hong Kong based Bellatrix Energy Limited and carried exactly 79,804.455 Metric Tons of oil.

The documents confirm JoyNews earlier report that a Tema-based private refinery, Platon Gas Oil Ghana Limited procured the crude oil.

The vessel departed the coast of Kazakhstan on 25th January, 2023 with Rakesh Ganesh Kumar as its Captain.

As JoyNews reported early on, the crude oil was to be stored in tanks at the state owned Tema Oil Refinery (TOR). Sources at the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) insist the crude oil has not been discharged yet for storage. The vessel was still docked at the Tema harbour as investigations continue.

TOR dispatched its quality control officer to board the vessel on Friday 24th February 2023, the same day the vessel docked at Tema.

JoyNews has seen the TOR quality control analysis report which confirms that samples were taken on Friday 24th February and analyzed on Saturday 25th February, 2023. The report, signed by the Quality Control Manager at TOR describes the product as “Light Crude Oil”.

The NPA is meanwhile still holding the vessel at the Tema harbour.

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