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Sanctions-busting suspect VLCC runs aground in China

A Panama-flagged VLCC linked to sanctioned oil trade is said to be stranded near an oil terminal in Qingdao

A rupture of the petroleum loading arm during the incident has caused oil to leak, although it is unsure whether there is any spill from the hull. The vessel is without P&I cover

A VERY large crude carrier allegedly linked to Iranian oil trades is said to have run aground at the Chinese port of Qingdao.

Mooring ropes were broken as the 2002-built, *Panama-flagged Arzoyi (IMO: 9248473) was unloading at Qingdao Haiye Mercuria Terminal on March 21, according to local port sources.

The petroleum loading arm was also snapped, causing oil to leak into the sea, they said.

It is not clear if there was any spill as a result of the incident, the cause of which is unknown. Local meteorological data shows weather conditions were normal at the time.

An official from the Qingdao Port Group, the main operator of the port, said he was unaware of the situation as the involved terminal was not owned and run by the group.

The terminal company has been approached for comment.

Lloyd’s List Intelligence data shows the 299,152 dwt tanker is registered to a Panama-based company Vitava Shipping.

The VLCC, which left Yosu in South Korea on March 16 and arrived in Qingdao on March 20, remains static at the port’s Huangdao oil terminal.

It is currently accompanied by a 63,388 dwt product tanker Zhong You Hua Yuan 18 (IMO: 9909950), which is likely to be used to unload cargo from the VLCC to help refloat it, according to one tanker expert.

Arzoyi was among a series of tankers identified from vessel-tracking data by United Against Nuclear Iran as being engaged in at least nine ship-to-ship transfers of Iranian crude last year.

The VLCC, previously named ADS Serenade and Front Serenade, is without P&I cover, according to Lloyd’s List Intelligence.

Its insurer was West of England P&I Club until January this year.

In a statement to Lloyd’s List, the club suggested at the time that the cancellation was in relation to the vessel’s breach of sanctions.



In the above story ‘Sanctions-busting suspect VLCC runs aground in China’ first published by Lloyd’s List on March 22, beneficial ownership of the Panama-flagged tanker Arzoyi (IMO: 9248473) was incorrectly attributed to Marshal Shipping LLC. 

Following a review of information, Lloyd’s List Intelligence updated its records for Arzoyi on March 23, removing reference to Marshal Shipping LLC as the Commercial Operator/Beneficial owner of the vessel. 

We are happy to clarify that Arzoyi is registered to a Panama-based company Vitava Shipping.

We apologise for any confusion caused.

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