By Sevgi Ceren Gokkoyun
ANKARA (AA) – Most of the crude oil tankers that were recently waiting for permission – 19 out of 26 – have proceeded through the Turkish Straits after submitting confirmation of insurance, Turkish authorities announced Tuesday.
In a statement, the Transportation and Infrastructure Ministry’s maritime authority also said 22 of the tankers loaded with crude oil had submitted their confirmation letters to Turkish authorities.
Türkiye has started requiring that oil tankers going through the Istanbul and Canakkale Straits confirm that they have insurance after some international companies canceled the coverage of vessels due to sanctions imposed on Russia over the war in Ukraine.
The obligation to take out insurance for a possible accident when oil tankers with an average length of more than two football fields carry crude oil through the straits is a safety measure that has been taken for years, it said.
It added that since Türkiye requiring a confirmation letter that oil tankers have insurance came into force on Dec. 1, the cargo amount of each of the crude oil-laden tankers which Türkiye requested an insurance confirmation for valid ranges between 90,000 and 140,000 tons.
It noted that there are only four oil tankers which have yet to submit confirmation, adding that there are no tankers loaded with crude oil waiting in the Marmara or Aegean seas due to a lack of confirmation letter.
It is pleasing that Türkiye’s negotiations resulted in the acceptance of its new practice, which will protect the Turkish Straits, and the resumption of maritime trade with the usual flow, it added.
The safety of property is ensured thanks to the ministry’s investments on technological infrastructure such as ship traffic systems in the Turkish Straits, particularly in the Istanbul Strait, known as the world’s most difficult waterway in terms of ship navigation, it added.