LONDON - Turkey has steeply slashed Iranian oil imports in June, dealing another blow to Tehran's stretched finances as its crude exports towards even the most loyal customers plummet due to Western sanctions.
Iran, which relies on oil for more than half its budget revenues, is already seeing crude exports fall sharply from regular levels of last year as the West raises pressure to force Tehran to abandon its nuclear program.
Loading data showed this week that Turkey, which is among Iran's top five customers, imported only three 150,000-tonne cargoes with Iranian crude in June through its two key ports of Aliaga and Tutunciftlik, averaging 110,000 barrels per day.
That represents a big decline from an average of 180,000 bpd imported last year and a huge slump from 250,000-280,000 bpd Turkey imported during some months in early 2012.
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