NPC Developing Upstream Petrochem Industries

NPC Developing Upstream Petrochem Industries NPC Developing Upstream Petrochem Industries

Petrochemicals account for 40 percent of non-oil exports, the National Petrochemical Co. deputy manager Mohammad Hussein Peyvandi said Monday, Tasnim news agency reported.

"Important steps have been taken to develop the upstream petrochemical industries, and this sector is still developing," he told state TV.

The official recalled that the total hydrocarbon used by the petrochemical industry ranges between five and seven percent, yet this volume "led to the production of 44 million tons of products which constitute 40 percent of non-oil exports. It is indicative of the industry's high added value power as well the potential for curbing crude exports."

Highlighting the domestic production of raw materials to develop downstream industries, Peyvandi reiterated that in order for the final product to be manufactured, some other materials are necessary that must be produced "We have planned accordingly."

Underlining the role of the petrochemical industry as one example of the 'economy of resistance,' the deputy manager called for both private and government investment to meet the growing demand of feedstock by the flourishing industry.

The economy of resistance is a policy proposed by the Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei to counter the sanctions, promote domestic growth and reduce consumption.

"Midstream and downstream industries would develop further if the entire petrochemical industry is on the stock market, rather than only selling its output" he said.

Peyvandi expressed hoped that annual petrochemical production would reach 180 million tons by 2024.

Following the export of petrochemical and polymer products to Belgium and Italy, Russia also has been added to the list of Iran's petrochemical customers.

Referring to the commencement of petrochemical and polymer products export to foreign countries, Muhammad Reza Eslamifar the head of Lorestan petrochemical complex said a 500-ton cargo, namely different grades of polyethylene, was exported to Russia.

The official said the annual production of 300,000 tons of polyethylene besides 30,000 tons of 1-boutene is now on the agenda.  Polymer exports to Russia is on the rise; moreover, negotiations are underway to boost petrochemical and polymer products export to Asia and European markets after the expected end of the economic and banking sanctions imposed on Iran due to its nuclear energy program.

After eight days of marathon talks on Tehran's nuclear program in Lausanne, Switzerland, Iran and the P5+1 (Britain, China, France, Russia, the US plus Germany) reached a framework agreement on April 2 that calls for lifting all trade sanctions against Iran. The details of the agreement are to be finalized by a June 30 deadline.

Underscoring the increased demand for Iran's petrochemicals, the National Petrochemical Co. production manager Ali Mohammad Basaghzadeh said that in addition to traditional customers, new purchase agreements are to be signed with other countries.  

Currently, 45 petrochemical units produce around 60 million tons, accounting for 36 percent of the total non-oil exports. According to global estimates, Iran holds 24 percent of the Middle East's and 4.2 percent of the world's petrochemical production capacity.