Oil prices slumped to fresh 12-year lows Friday, as dealers prepared for increased Iranian exports to the market against a backdrop of a global supply glut. New York prices hit $29.39 a barrel, a level last seen in November 2003. Brent meanwhile dropped to $29.45 — the lowest level since February 2004.
With Iran poised to hike output after the lifting of Western-backed nuclear sanctions, some analysts have warned of further losses for crude. The implementation of a deal between the two sides, allowing the removal of sanctions, is expected by Saturday.
Meanwhile, Tehran will target India, Asia’s fastest-growing major oil market, and old partners in Europe with hundreds of thousands of barrels of its crude. Iran has 22 Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCCs) floating off its coast, with 13 fully or almost fully loaded, mapping data on Thomson Reuters’ Eikon showed, carrying enough crude to meet India’s import needs for almost a week.
An Iranian source close to supply negotiations said that the country — which has the world’s fourth-biggest proven oil reserves — was targeting India as its main destination for crude.