(Bloomberg) — Iran’s oil tankers are starting to disappear from global satellite tracking systems with just under six weeks to go until U.S. sanctions are due to hit the country’s exports, making it harder to keep track of the nation’s sales.
No signals have been received by shore stations or satellites from 10 of the Persian Gulf nation’s crude oil supertankers for at least a week, according to tanker tracking data compiled by Bloomberg. The most likely explanation is that the vessels’ transponders have been switched off, making it more difficult to track the their movements.
When they were last seen, the 10 vessels, which are listed below, were holding around 13 million barrels of crude and condensate, a light form of crude extracted from gas fields. If they’re now full, that would rise to about 20 million barrels.