Petrochem Share in Non-Oil Exports to Reach 35%

Petrochem Share in Non-Oil Exports to Reach 35%Petrochem Share in Non-Oil Exports to Reach 35%

Iran is planning to raise the share of petrochemical products in annual non-oil exports to 35%, the head of the Association of Petrochemical Industry Corporation said on Tuesday.

"The share of petrochemicals in non-oil exports reached 33% from 28%" in the previous Iranian year that ended on March 19, Ahmad Mahdavi was quoted as saying by Shana.

"The chunk is planned to reach 35% this year," he added.

The petrochemical sector is Iran's second-largest industry after oil and gas.

Iran's nominal petrochemical production capacity is close to 60 million tons a year, with annual output standing at 40.5 million tons, 44.5 million tons and 45.6 million tons over the past three years. The volume is expected to reach 50 million tons this year.

Iran also plans to double its output capacity by 2020 and bump it to 180 million tons a year in the space of a decade.

The country was freed from most western restrictions in January that had largely shut it out of the global financial and banking system and limited foreign investment in its underlying economic projects, including petrochemical plants.

Following the easing of sanctions, the Middle East's second-largest economy has set sights on a massive $55 billion investment in its petrochemical projects by 2025, Mahdavi said.

"Iran needs to attract $6 billion a year in petrochemical industry. This is while investment over the past two years accounted for $2.5 billion."

To strengthen its ailing economy that largely hinges on revenues from crude oil, Iran is taking steps to use its crude and natural gas to produce a wide range of petrochemical products that yield a higher profit margin.