OFAC Advisory to the Maritime Petroleum Shipping Community

Sanctions Risks Related to Shipping Petroleum and Petroleum Products from Iran
September 4, 2019

The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) is issuing this advisory to alert persons globally to the significant U.S. sanctions risks for parties involved in shipping petroleum or petroleum products from Iran after the expiration of any applicable significant reduction exceptions on May 2, 2019. These shipments create significant sanctions risk for entities and individuals in the shipping industry, including shipping companies, vessel owners, managers, operators, insurers, and financial institutions. Those who knowingly engage in significant transactions for the purchase, acquisition, sale, transport, or marketing of petroleum or petroleum products from Iran — or knowingly provide significant support to an Iranian person on OFAC’s List of Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons (SDN List), such as the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), the National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC), and the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) — are at serious risk of being targeted by the United States for sanctions, regardless of the location or nationality of those engaging in such activities. Further, persons providing bunkering services to vessels transporting petroleum or petroleum products from Iran risk being subject to sanctions unless an applicable waiver or exception applies. The United States continues to take strong action to deny the Government of Iran funds derived from the illicit exportation of petroleum or petroleum products from Iran.

The United States is committed to aggressively enforcing our sanctions against the Iranian regime, denying it the financial means to sponsor terrorism and advance its ballistic missile program while permitting humanitarian trade benefitting the Iranian people. Targeting shipments of petroleum and petroleum products from Iran is a critical element of denying the Iranian regime access to financial resources to support its malign activities.