Arvandan Will Raise Oil Output by 50%

Arvandan Will Raise Oil Output by 50%Arvandan Will Raise Oil Output by 50%

Arvandan Oil and Gas Company will raise its crude oil output by 50% by next March, as part of National Iranian Oil Company's plan to increase production by one million barrels per day.

"The crude output of Arvandan will increase by 100,000 bpd by the end of the current fiscal year on March 19, 2016," chief executive Soltan Kamali said Saturday.

The company controls 11% of Iran's recoverable oil reserves. Currently, the NIOC subsidiary extracts 200,000 barrels of crude from its wells every day, Moj News Agency reported.

Iran is aiming to increase oil output by 500,000 barrels per day within two months of easing international sanctions that have halved oil shipments in recent years.

Tehran reached a historic deal with six world powers that would see sanctions against Iran's banking and oil industries removed in exchange for curbing parts of its nuclear program.

When sanctions are removed, production will rise immediately by half a million barrels per day, and after four to five months, by an additional half-million barrels, Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said recently, Bloomberg reported.

"We will reach a figure between 3.8 million and 3.9 million barrels a day," he said.

Saudi Arabia is pumping 10.5 million barrels daily.

  Improving Recovery

Kamali said Iran has over 156 billion barrels of oil and gas condensates, of which only 15% are recoverable with NIOC's technology.

Limited investment, US sanctions and a high rate of natural decline have decreased Iran's ability to recover oil from its mature oilfields. Production at oilfields is declining by nearly 10% each year. Thus, the Oil Ministry is seeking better extraction technology for its oilfields.

Enhanced oil recovery techniques like gas injection can help maintain production, which is declining at an annual rate of approximately 8% onshore and 10% offshore, according to US Energy Information.

With NIOC's current technology, it is only possible to extract around a quarter of the oil in place from Iran’s fractured carbonate reservoirs, 10% less than the world average.

"We hope to boost our recovery rate with new technologies," Kamali said.

  Shared Fields

Arvandan controls 60% of the oil and gas fields shared with Iran's bordering countries. These fields have become the Oil Ministry's top priority recently, as Iran feels it has fallen behind its neighbors in producing from these fields due to lower investment in recent years.

Iran shares hydrocarbon reserves with Kuwait, Iraq, Qatar, Bahrain, UAE, Saudi Arabia and Turkmenistan.

Of Arvandan's recoverable reserves, 8.68 billion barrels lie in the shared oilfields, while 2.89 billion barrels are in exclusive hydrocarbon reservoirs.

"The amount of recoverable oil Arvandan has is shared fields, in its 5,000-kilometer territory, which add to the company's significance," said Kamali.

  Careers Up for Grab

Arvandan will hire new personnel to carry on with its expansion plans.

The company has 500 fulltime staff and 2,500 people under contract. It plans to double its personnel to 6,000 within the next 10 years.  

However, only 1,000 will be government staff and the rest will be contractors from the private sector.

"The company will carry out its operations through contractors and our staff will mainly monitor and manage operations at high levels," said the chief executive.