Petrochem Revenues to Reach $40b by 2021

Petrochem Revenues  to Reach $40b by 2021Petrochem Revenues  to Reach $40b by 2021

Iran's petrochemical production capacity will reach 129 million tons per year by the end of the sixth five-year economic development plan (2016-21), generating an estimated $40 billion in annual revenues, deputy for planning and development at the National Petrochemical Company told a press conference on Monday.

"A total of 123 petrochemical projects are being implemented by the private and public sectors," Hamidreza Rostami said, hoping that $7 billion in investments per year would be attracted over the next few years, Moj News Agency reported.

The official called for boosting the private sector's role in the petrochemical sector and said attracting direct investments, implementing petrochemical projects in less-developed areas nationwide and financing the present petrochemical projects top the NPC agenda.

Plans call for building new methanol production units with an overall capacity of 25 million tons per year.

In addition, more than 44 million tons of ethane was supplied to petrochemical complexes last year following the completion of several South Pars Gas Field phases in the Persian Gulf.

Iran, one of the world's top oil producers, exported around $14 billion worth of petrochemicals in 2014, down from more than $18 billion in 2011.

Annual petrochemical output in the previous two Iranian years accounted for 40.5 million tons and 44.5 million tons respectively.

The volume is expected to surpass the 50-million-ton milestone in the Iranian year ending March 19, 2016, upon the completion of several SP phases and a hike in ethane production.

NPC has estimated that Iran's nominal petrochemical production capacity will reach 62.6 million tons this year.

  Investment Plans

Sixty-seven major petrochemical projects, mostly remaining from the fourth and fifth plans, are now under development, of which more than a dozen are due for completion by March 2017, Rostami said.

He added that 21 projects are financed by the Chinese and 20 more via the National Development Fund of Iran.

"NPC's policy is based on ending the monopoly [on petrochemical projects] and facilitating conditions for investment," he said.

He added that NPC's approach to natural gas exports is increasing the value-added of this abundant fossil fuel by producing petrochemicals such as urea and ammonia.

According to official reports, Iran’s export of petrochemicals reached 2.48 million tons in March-September, bringing in $1.6 billion in revenues.

It expects total petrochemical exports to hit $11 billion while domestic sales are estimated to reach $11.1 billion, bringing the overall value of petrochemical sales to exceed $22 billion by March.

Rostami hoped that the July 14 agreement with six world powers on Tehran's nuclear program will facilitate the funding of petrochemical projects and transfer of technology in this key sector.