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Oil Tankers Dodge Top Mideast Refueling Hub After Ship Attacks

  • Higher insurance premiums and risk keeping some tankers away
  • Oil trading volumes at port have slumped since 2017 Qatar spat
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Oil tanker owners are avoiding sending their ships to the Middle East’s main refueling hub after a spate of attacks on vessels in the past two months ratcheted up tensions and highlighted the growing risks of operating in the region.

Strikes on tankers just outside the Persian Gulf in mid-June were the second in a month near the Strait of Hormuz, the chokepoint through which about a third of global seaborne oil moves. Now demand for ship fuel at Fujairah, the United Arab Emirates coastal shipping hub close to the Strait, has waned as some tankers stay away, traders involved in the regional market said.