EghtesadOnline: Four phases of the giant South Pars Gas Field off the Persian Gulf were officially launched Sunday in the presence of President Hassan Rouhani and Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zangeneh.
Speaking at the inauguration of Phases 13 and 22-24, Rouhani said Iran invested $11 billion in the development of the four phases.
Each phase produces 56 million cubic meters per day of sour gas, 50 mcm/d of methane, 400 t/d of sulfur and 75,000 barrels of gas condensate, as well as 1 million tons of LPG and the same volume of ethane per year.
The president referred to other projects launched in the outgoing fiscal that have helped increase gasoline output to levels where there is need for imports, according to Financial Tribune.
Projects in Bandar Abbas Oil Refinery and Persian Gulf Star Refinery, both in Bandar Abbas, Hormozgan Province, raised the refineries’ output and helped complete the value-added chain in the key oil and gas industries.
Addressing a press conference in Asalouyeh, Bushehr Province, Zanganeh said the country would be producing over 750 million cubic meters of natural gas from all South Pars phases by March 2021, the Oil Ministry news website Shana reported.
South Pars is the world's largest gas field, shared between Iran and Qatar, covering 3,700 square kilometers of Iran's territorial waters in the Persian Gulf.
With the new phases now operational, 23 phases have come on stream and only Phase 11 remains incomplete.
Iran is producing more gas from the joint field than Qatar, Zangeneh revealed.
Iran has bettered Qatar in its share of the joint South Pars Gasfield over the past six years.
Daily gas production on the Iranian side was 285 million cubic meters in 2013 and Qatar produced 566 mcm.
Production in the neighboring Arab emirate has reached 600 mcm after six years but Iran is producing 610 mcm of gas.
Iran’s daily gas production capacity is 840 million cubic meters. Supplies from South Pars account for over two-thirds of the total domestic demand.
Iran is developing the mega gas project in 24 phases. The field has produced 1.5 trillion cubic meters of gas since 2002 when the first phase was launched.
Regarding SP Phase 11 development, Zangeneh said a high-profile Chinese delegation was to travel to Iran to discuss the project.
“Managing director of the National Iranian Oil Company Masoud Karbasian has visited China to discuss the matter.”
He added that the Sulfur Recovery Units of phases 13 and 22-24 refineries are ready, which means “not a gram of gas would be flared in the refineries.”
Except for the first few phases that were developed in cooperation with multinationals like France's Total, domestic companies carried out large parts of the projects, the minister noted.
More than $72 billion has been invested in the giant energy venture since work started two decades ago.
Regarding the petrochemical sector, he said: “Almost 30 million tons of petrochemicals are produced annually, and is expected to reach 50 million tons by 2021. In order to achieve the higher targets, 18 projects are underway and on completion there will be huge leap in petrochemical revenue”.
The minister also took stock of gas exports. “As far as gas export to Pakistan is concerned, we have done our share of pipe-laying, but they have not. They also have political excuses, saying they are under pressure from the UAE and Saudi Arabia. Pakistan cannot find gas cheaper than in Iran.”
On gas export to Iraq, Zanganeh said the US sanctions on Iran have not hurt Iran’s gas exports, but there are hurdles regarding payments for gas exports to the Arab neighbor that are being resolved.