Iran in Talks Over $7b Worth of Petrochem Deals

Talks Over Petrochem Deals Worth $7 BillionTalks Over Petrochem Deals Worth $7 Billion

In line with policies to reduce the production and sale of low value-added products, two projects, worth about $7 billion, are being finalized to produce an array of petrochemicals with greater return, the managing director of Persian Gulf Holding Company said.

"The plan, worth $2 billion, will be implemented with the help of a well-known European firm whose name shall remain anonymous as long as the contract is not finalized," Adel Nejad-Salim was also quoted as saying by NIPNA, the official portal of the National Petrochemical Company, on Saturday.

Pointing to other ongoing talks with an unnamed European company, Nejad-Salim said another venture worth $5 billion is planned in Asalouyeh Petrochemical Plant to manufacture polyethylene.

According to the official, PGHC has commenced projects worth $6 billion in the First Five-Year Economic Development Plan (1991-96) all of which will be completed in 2019.

The official said the company's development program is mainly focused on expanding operational units, reforming economic structures and completing the company's production basket with value-added goods.

Attaching great importance to stop using liquid gas as feedstock, he noted that all PGHC's subsidiaries will receive natural gas as feedstock in the future.

Asked about Bid Boland II Gas Refinery handed over to PGHC in 2015, Nejad-Salim noted that the initiative has registered a work-in -progress rate of 70% and is slated to come on stream by 2019.

"The under-construction refinery will provide Gachsaran Petrochemical Complex with its much-needed feedstock," he said.

According to the official, the Gachsaran plant has made 50% progress and will become operational simultaneously with Bid Boland II Gas Refinery.

"Upon the completion of the two projects, PGHC's output will reach 40 million tons per annum," he said, noting that the company's production stood at 18.5 million tons between March 20 and Nov. 22, 2017, indicating a 106% rise year-on-year.

Pointing to PGHC's sales in the period, Nejad-Salim said the company generated $6.5 billion, indicating a 10% rise year-on-year, of which $4 billion were earned through exports.

  Lucrative Industry

The official believes that if major petrochemical ventures are not internationally funded, government and non-government bodies cannot help the industry flourish.

Highlighting the effect of different variables on investors' final decision, Nejad-Salim said, "Preliminary economic feasibility studies are aimed at providing the two firms with accurate information to help them prevent a leap in the dark."

Reportedly, French energy major Total S.A. has reached a preliminary agreement to build three petrochemical plants, with a total capacity of 2.2 million tons in a deal that, if finalized, could see the French oil major invest up to $2 billion in the lucrative sector.

"The deal, planned to be finalized in the near future, will allow a third-party company to conduct studies to pave the way for clinching a final contract," he said, noting that the in-depth survey will determine whether investing in such a collaborative venture under the current circumstances in Iran is financially viable.

Asked about cooperation with Anglo-Dutch major Royal Dutch Shell, Nejad-Salim said a joint workgroup will carry out feasibility studies on cooperative ventures in Iran in the near future.

Reportedly, Shell signed an agreement with the National Iranian Oil Company last year on expanding cooperation in the key petrochemical industry.

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