Energy, Economy

Iran Gov't Highlights Firm Oil and Gas Industry in 1st Major Report

Iran Gov't Highlights Firm Oil and Gas Industriy in 1st Major ReportIran Gov't Highlights Firm Oil and Gas Industriy in 1st Major Report

Iran has kept up the pace of crude oil and natural gas production in the second and last term of Hassan Rouhani as president, government data indicated.

In a report published this week, government reflected on the Rouhani administration's performance in the petroleum industry since he was sworn into office in early August.

The report showed that Iran pumped 3.89 million barrels per day of crude oil and condensates in the month between July 23 and Aug. 22 as production averaged 3.87 million bpd in the first five months of current fiscal year that started in March.

That is above the 3.79-million-bpd level Iran has agreed to for its oil production as part of an OPEC-led deal with non-members including Russia to slash supply by 1.8 million bpd to lift prices.

Between July 23-Aug. 22, Iran shipped 2.7 million bpd of crude while exports in the seven months since March 21 were around 2.6 million barrels, the report said. Under the US and EU restrictions, crude exports had slumped to 1 million barrels a day.

Rouhani's administration negotiated a historic nuclear agreement with world powers (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany) in 2015 that lifted curbs against Iran's energy industry in the beginning of last year and eased the return of international companies in oil and gas projects.

In the last three months, Iran has added at least 65,000 barrels to its daily output, including 45,000 barrels and 20,000 barrels a day from Yadavaran and South Azadegan fields respectively, both located in an oil-rich region, known as West Karun, near the Iran-Iraq border.

Crude and condensate output has increased 118,000 bpd in the six months to Sept. 22 from the same period of last year, while exports have risen by 130,000 barrels a day in that period.

- Natural Gas, Gasoline

Iran's gas production capacity in South Pars, the world's largest gas field in the Persian Gulf that stretches into Qatar's territory, has reached 575 million cubic meters per day. That constitutes nearly two-thirds of Iranian gas output capacity.

However the report has not specified actual output of South Pars which has reportedly fallen due to shutdowns for maintenance.

The country hopes to develop its South Pars deposit using the investment and technology of Total that became the first major western energy firm to sign a deal after the lifting of economic curbs in January 2016.

Despite burning most of its gas to meet domestic demand, Iran has shored up the exports of the clean fossil fuel. According to the report, exports to Iraq has reached 10 mcm/d over the last 100 days from around 6 million cubic meters a day since gas transport began in June.

The Arab country is now the second biggest customer of Iranian gas after Turkey which has signed an agreement for up to 30 mcm/d of gas.

Data also showed that production of Euro-4 quality gasoline topped 26.3 million a day in September, but supply has been inconsistent as Iran's largest gas producing facility, the Persian Gulf Star Refinery, has underperformed since its launch in late April.

The country's aging processing plants continue to produce fuels with low value, namely mazut and diesel, whose exports reached 45 million and 10 million liters a day respectively during March-Sept.

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