Iran expects sharp rise in gas production, exports
The Dollar Business Bureau
Iran will witness a sharp increase in its natural gas production and exports after easing of Western sanctions last year, Deputy Oil Minister of Iran, Amir Hossein Zamaninia said on Tuesday.
The latest deals with global companies show that they believe the sanctions are not coming back, he added.
Iran's gas output would increase to 1 billion cubic metres per day by this year end from the present 800 million cubic metres a day, said Zamaninia.
The Minister further said the volumes currently available for exports with the country should rise to 365 million cubic metres per day by 2021, which is more than the exports of Qatar - the largest producer of liquefied natural gas in the world.
Earlier this month, France's energy company Total signed a contract to help Iran in increasing its gas production from the world’s largest natural gas South Pars/North Dome Field, which Tehran shares with Qatar.
The French firm will be the major operator with a stake of 50.1%, alongside China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), a state-owned energy company with 30% stake and Petropars a subsidiary of National Iranian Oil Co (NIOC) with 19.9%.
The deal would be the first by a major international energy firm signed with the country since the relaxation of sanctions against Iran in January last year.
“With the contracts signed last week, with the Chinese company and Total and the Iranian company, that is also a very good indication that the assessment by international oil companies is that the return of sanctions is very unlikely, if not impossible,” Zamaninia briefed at a conference held in Istanbul.