Iran Petrochemical Capacity to Rise 10m Tons by March

Petrochemical Capacity to Rise 10m Tons by MarchPetrochemical Capacity to Rise 10m Tons by March

Iran’s petrochemical production capacity is expected to rise by 10 million tons in about four months upon the launch of new petrochemical ventures.

According to NIPNA, the National Petrochemical Company's official news agency, the country's petrochemical output currently stands at 62 million tons, but is expected to reach 72 million tons a year by the end of the current fiscal year in March.

"Phase 3 of Pardis Petrochemical Company, with a capacity of 1.7 million tons of urea and ammonium, has registered a work-in-progress rate of 99.5% and will go on line within weeks," NIPNA said in a report, adding that Kaveh Methanol Company in Bandar Dayyer with 2.3 million tons—targeted to become the world's biggest methanol plant—is slated to become fully operational by December.

NIPNA added that Marjan Petrochemical Company's 1.7-million-ton per year plant in Asaluyeh as well as the first phase of Bushehr complex, which includes methanol and utility units, have made more than 90% progress and will come on stream by March 2018.

Upon completion, Bushehr Petrochemical Complex will have an annual petrochemical production capacity of 3 million tons, including 1.65 million tons of methanol, 1 million tons of olefins, 550,000 tons of ethylene glycol, 300,000 tons of light and heavy polymers and 300,000 tons of acetic acid.

The lion's share of petrochemical exports is bound for India, China and South Korea, and the country is gaining more ground in Africa and Europe.

  Serious Talks

Commenting on the National Petrochemical Company's plans to attract foreign investment and technology, Hossein Alimorad, director of investment at NPC, added that serious talks are underway with petrochem giants.

"International firms like Royal Dutch Shell, France's Total and unnamed Chinese and Japanese investors are finalizing their feasibility studies," Alimorad said, expressing hope that ongoing talks with multinationals yield positive results as they are approaching the final stretch to invest in the country's massive petrochemical projects.

Pointing to foreign enterprises' enthusiasm to play an active role in Iran's mega projects despite the political propaganda, the official noted that attracting foreign investment depends on a wide range of domestic and international factors, based on which financers decide whether or not to maintain their presence in ventures.

According to Alimorad, Iran is studying the technical and financial terms of agreements with Shell on the construction of petrochemical plants in the country and will sign contracts with the energy major in the near future.

Shell signed an agreement with NPC last year on expanding cooperation in the key petrochemical industry.

The Anglo-Dutch company has agreed to invest $350 million in a major petrochemical project in Ibn Sina Petrochemical Complex located in Hamedan Province.

Asked about France's Total that has opened an office in Washington to strengthen relations with the US administration, Alimorad said, "Adopting such measures has something to do with companies' internal policies and we cannot limit the scope of other firms' collaborations as they do not have the right to restrict us."

"Iran is willing to accelerate the development process of its petrochemical industries, especially in Mahshahr, Qeshm, Lavan and Parsian regions, with the help of foreign investment," he said, adding that preliminary negotiations are being held with some Chinese firms to attract $8-11 billion in direct investment.

Iran holds some of the world's largest crude oil and natural gas reserves, but its petrochemical industry is comparatively underdeveloped.







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