NIGC Raising the Bar at SP

NIGC Raising the Bar at SPNIGC Raising the Bar at SP

Iran’s gas giant says it has plans to raise production capacity to 1 billion cubic meters per day from the South Pars field within two years and produce 1.2 bcm/d by 2020.

Hamidreza Araqi, managing director of the National Iranian Gas Company, made the statement on Wednesday, Mehr News Agency reported.

“Natural gas output currently stands at 450 million cubic meters per day,” he said, adding that production will rise by 500 mcm by the end of the current fiscal year in March 2017.

According to Araqi, as soon as South Pars phases 18, 19, 20 and 21 go on stream, gas output from the major field will reach 500 million cubic meters per day, exceeding that of Qatar, which is 480 mcm/day.

South Pars is the world’s largest gas field shared by Iran and Qatar, covering an area of 3,700 square kilometers in Iran’s territorial waters in the Persian Gulf. It adjoins Qatar’s North Field spread over 6,000 square kilometers.

Highlighting NIGC efforts to undertake development projects across the country, the official noted that there has been a significant increase in supplying gas to power plants and industries, thanks to the completion of new South Pars phases.

“We have placed expansion of gas networks high on our agenda. During the past three years, 85% of rural areas were linked to the national gas grid. Plans call for extending the network to 70 more towns and 8,000 villages, especially in the deprived regions in southeastern Sistan-Baluchestan Province, by the end of 2017,” he said.

Araqi was of the opinion that nationwide gas networking will contribute to energy security and social development.

“Iran exported 20.3 billion cubic meters of natural gas during the past three years, 13.6% more than the volume during former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s second term from 2009 to 2013,” he noted. Stable gas supplies to neighboring countries has encouraged  international markets to build trust in Iran, the senior official was quoted as saying.

On gas export plans to India and Pakistan, he said Iran is able and willing to provide neighboring states with their much-needed energy needs.

“Regarding the Iran- Pakistan (IP) gas pipeline project, Iran remains committed in its entirety. However, Pakistan so far has been unable to complete the pipeline on its territory.”

Pakistan blames its own financial woes and international restrictions in doing business with Iran for the delay in laying the pipeline on its side. And despite promising statements by senior officials in Islamabad in recent months, the country has yet to take effective measures to import gas from Iran via the IP pipeline.