Development of Gas Fields Tops NIGC Priority

Development of Gas Fields Tops NIGC PriorityDevelopment of Gas Fields Tops NIGC Priority

Development of gas fields is the top priority of the National Iranian Gas Company, the company's chief of operations, Abdolhossein Samari, said on Monday.

Samari said Iran will continue to boost the domestic manufacture of gas equipment, Shana reported.

One of the most hydrocarbon-rich countries, Iran has the largest proven natural gas reserves surpassing Russia's, according to US Energy Information Administration.

These reserves remain largely untapped. Thus, the Oil Ministry is looking to invest heavily in upstream gas infrastructure and expand the 43 existing gas fields.

The main push for expansion will be in the 23 fields shared between Iran and its neighbors. The supergiant North Dome/South Pars field in the Persian Gulf is by far the most important of these fields. It is estimated to hold about 18.2% of the world’s total gas reserves.

  Support for Domestic Manufacturers

However, NIGC is not throwing caution to the wind. The company still plans to help Iranian manufacturers supply some of its needed gear.

"In the post-sanctions era, domestic products of a quality compatible with our standards will enjoy preference. We will be obliged to buy from them," Samari said.

"We used to import gas compressors, but now we buy them from domestic manufacturers."

Government officials have constantly lauded the efforts of Iranian private sector manufacturers. Nevertheless, their actions have fallen far short of their words.

The government's recent support for private sector manufacturers comes from experience.

Following the tightening of sanctions against Iran's nuclear program, the Oil Ministry, along with other government agencies, saw the pitfall of relying on foreign technology and stepped up support for Iranian manufacturers.

"The sanctions taught us the need for self-reliance and because of the advances made in this regard, foreign companies now view Iran in a different light," Samari said.