TEHRAN: Iran capable of exporting gas to major markets

Iran capable of exporting gas to major markets

27 Oct. 2004

Wednesday, October 27, 2004 – ©2004 IranMania.com

LONDON, Oct 27 (IranMania) – Iran will increase its natural gas
production capacity from 130 billion cubic meter per year to 300
billion cubic meter within next 10 years and the figure is expected
to hit 400 billion cubic meter in 20 years.

According to Petroenergy Information Network (P.I.N), Hadi Nejad
Hosseinian, deputy oil minister for international affairs, told
the conference on ‘energy transfer in Asia, Europe; challenges and
prospect’ in Brussels, Belgium that Iran is also planning to boost its
crude output from the current figure of 4.2 mln barrels per day to 6
mln barrels a day within next 10 years. He said during past seven years
more than $46 bln have been invested in Iran’s oil and gas industry,
65% of which came through foreign investment, adding, “We are planning
to invest about $100 bln in oil and gas industries by 2015.”

The official noted that Iran has made plans to export liquefied
natural gas to china, India, Japan, East Asia and Europe.

“We are currently exporting gas to Turkey and exports to Armenia,
Nakhichevan and the United Arab Emirates will start soon,” he noted.

Nejad Hosseinian added that Iran’s proximity to big gas producing
and exporting countries has given it many options in international
negotiations while geographical conditions of the country played a
great role in this regard.

The deputy minister said European countries’ dependence on natural gas
will increase in coming decades and European states are expected to
supply 65 percent of their needed natural gas through imports within
next 25 years (by 2030).

“Russia is currently supplying the lion’s share of the European gas,
but it may not be able to supply all needed gas to member states of the
Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD),” he said.

The official added that Iran, which is a neighbor to Russia,
Commonwealth of Independent States and Caucasus, is also capable of
meeting the needs of markets with exceptional demand such as Pakistan,
India, China, and even Japan. Nejad Hosseinian stated that transferring
Caspian oil to Persian Gulf through Iran was a vital projects that
would lead to bolstering regional cooperation, but “interference of
countries from outside the region that follow political goals will
result in an economic catastrophe.”

He mentioned financial requirements for gas transfer projects, low
price of gas, the need to predetermined customers, high value of gas
transfer, passage through various countries and political risks in
every country as major challenges facing gas transfer projects.

“I believe that high oil price which is partly due to inadequate
supply, is a warning for natural gas users among member states of the
European Union. Low oil price in past years preventing investment in
production which led to current undesirable situation,” he noted. He
noted that cooperation among Caspian littoral states will benefit
all those countries, noting, “Stability and lack of political chaos
are major factors ensuring safe signing of natural gas contracts.”

The conference on ‘energy transfer in Asia, Europe; challenges and
prospect’ was held in Brussels for two days and was attended by
representatives from Turkey, Ukraine, Russia, Iran, and Kazakhstan
as well as directors and representatives of major oil companies.