British Royal Navy to escort tankers in Strait of Hormuz
The British Royal Navy will escort UK-flagged vessels going through the Strait of Hormuz, amid a sudden spike in tensions in the Middle East. Several media outlets reported the Royal Navy’s plan to protect UK-flagged ships.
HMS Montrose (F236), a Duke-class Type 23 frigate, and HMS Defender (D36 ), a Daring-class Type 45 destroyer, were sent to escort British-flagged ships through the strategic choke maritime chokepoint.
The Strait of Hormuz is located between Oman and Iran and connects the Persian Gulf with the Gulf of Oman and the Arabian Sea. In 2018, an average of 21 million barrels of oil flowed through the narrow passage, equal to 21 percent of the global petroleum liquid’s consumption.
“The government will take all necessary steps to protect our ships and citizens at this time,” Defence Minister Ben Wallace said.
"There are limited options to bypass the Strait of Hormuz. Only Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have pipelines that can ship crude oil outside the Persian Gulf and have the additional pipeline capacity to circumvent the Strait of Hormuz,” according to the U.S. Department of Energy.
Oil prices have been trending higher as a result of the latest developments, with Brent crude breaking the $70 ceiling for the first time in several months and West Texas Intermediate moving closer to $65 a barrel, according to Irina Slav of oilprice.com.
Maritime Business World