IOOC to Raise Output by 60,000 bpd

IOOC to Raise Output by 60,000 bpdIOOC to Raise Output by 60,000 bpd

The Iranian Offshore Oil Company can raise crude production by 60,000 barrels per day within two months of lifting the sanctions, IOOC production manager, Mohammad Baqer Soleimani, said, calling for further investment in joint oil and gas fields.

Soleimani said IOOC's oil production capacity has shrunk by merely 50,000-60,000 bpd as a result of sanctions and it can make up for the deficit within 30-45 days after the sanctions are removed, Tasnim News Agency reported.

The official also said maintenance and overhaul of offshore oil wells have been hit by sanctions, while budget constraints stymied the development of offshore oil sectors.

IOOC's total crude production is close to 500,000 barrels per day, but the company aims to increase the output by 32,000 barrels in the short run, and by 130,000 and 400,000 barrels in the medium- and long-term respectively.

Iran is targeting 3.9 million bpd of oil production by March, with output rising by 500,000 bpd soon after sanctions are lifted and by 1 million barrels within the following five months.

"Despite months of fluctuation in oil prices and no promising prospect for the global crude market in the near future, the Oil Ministry should prioritize the development of joint oilfields in the Persian Gulf, as neighboring rivals are drawing shared hydrocarbon resources at a much faster rate in some southern fields," Soleimani said.

Iran has 26 joint oil and gas fields with neighbors, but a lack of modern technology and sufficient budget has hampered the development of joint fields in the Iranian territory.

Soleimani added that developing all oilfields under the tutelage of IOOC, except the Esfandiar Oilfield, is now a priority.

The statement comes as IOOC Managing Director Saeed Hafezi said last week that an initial agreement has been reached with a Norwegian-Austrian company to develop the oilfield. Discovered in 1966, the joint field with Saudi Arabia has been one of the country's least developed oilfields. It is 95 kilometers southwest of Kharg Island in the Persian Gulf and holds an estimated 532 million barrels of crude oil.

Hafezi also said developing the offshore oil and gas fields is more time-consuming and takes a minimum of three years on average for an offshore rig to be built and go operational.

The oilfields under development by IOOC hold an estimated 100 billion barrels of crude, comprising roughly 15% of the country's total oil reserves.