SP Phase 12 Launch Set for Tuesday

SP Phase 12 Launch  Set for Tuesday
SP Phase 12 Launch  Set for Tuesday

Phase 12 of the South Pars oil and gas field in the Persian Gulf will be officially inaugurated Tuesday by President Hassan Rouhani.

The president was slated to launch Phase 12 on the 36th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution in mid-February, but according to Ali-Akbar Shabanpour, managing director of Pars Oil and Gas Company (POGC), the plan was called off "due to bad weather at the time that consequently cancelled many flights and made it difficult for officials to use helicopters to attend the event."

South Pars is the world's largest oil and gas field, shared between Iran and Qatar, covering an area of 3,700 square kilometers of Iran's territorial waters in the Persian Gulf. It adjoins Qatar’s North Field, which measures 6,000 square kilometers.

Phase 12 is SP's biggest phase in terms of volume of activities as well as investment and production level. The field is estimated to contain 14 trillion cubic meters of gas and 18 billion barrels of gas condensate.

Around 67 percent, or two-thirds of Phase 12 gas goes to storage facilities and the rest is pumped from phases 6-8, according to Rasoul Fallahnejad, director of SP Phase 12.

The official ruled out that Phase 12 is still under development and said, "All facilities and refineries of Phase 12 are ready for operation." He added that three platforms are now fully operational and require only minor adjustments.

Extraction from Phase 12 has reached nearly 54 million cubic meters per day (mcm/d), but its output is expected to reach 62.5 mcm/d by August. Once fully operational, it will pump 75 mcm/d sweet gas into the national gas network.

Iran presently takes approximately 300 mcm/d of gas from SP, while the tiny Arab neighbor Qatar draws nearly double that volume. Iran's Oil Ministry aims to increase its share from the joint filed to as much as 800 mcm/d by launching 24 SP phases within the next two years.

Iran has 26 joint oil and gas fields with its neighbors, but the lack of modern technology and funds for developing the fields has slowed down progress in South Pars projects. However, Qatar is exploiting the joint field at an astonishing pace.