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Iran to Invest $18bln in South Oil

Service : Economy
TEHRAN, July 11 (ICANA) – Senior Iranian oil officials announced that Iran will invest $18 billion in the development of its oil and gas fields in the hydrocarbon-rich south of the country in a 5-year development plan ending 2015.
Monday, July 11, 2011 10:10:23 PM
Iran to Invest $18bln in South Oil

Speaking to the oil ministry website Shana, Iran's Deputy Oil Minister for Planning Mohsen Khojastemehr said a majority of the $18-billion spending plan to 2015 will be met by Iran.

He added that about $3 billion would be spent on Southern projects by next March.

"Many plans are being implemented to accelerate development of shared oil and gas fields while the ministry aims to increase oil production in the oil-rich region of the South to 3 million barrels a day," the official told Shana.

The Yadavaran oil field being developed by Iran's National Oil Company (NIOC) and China's Sinopec will start production this autumn at around 20,000 bpd and climb to its expected ceiling of 85,000 bpd over the next two years, he said.

China is one of the biggest buyers of Iranian crude oil and its top energy company CNPC has deals to boost output at Iran's North Azadegan oil field and South Pars gas field.

Iran, which sits on the world's second largest reserves of both oil and gas, is facing US sanctions over its civilian nuclear program.

Iranian officials have dismissed US sanctions as inefficient, saying that they are finding Asian partners instead. Several Chinese and other Asian firms are negotiating or signing up to more and more oil and gas deals.

Following US pressures on companies to stop business with Tehran, many western companies decided to do a balancing act. They tried to maintain their presence in Iran, which is rich in oil and gas, but not getting into big deals that could endanger their interests in the US.

Yet, after oil giants in the West witnessed that their absence in big deals has provided Chinese, Indian and Russian companies with excellent opportunities to sign up to an increasing number of energy projects and earn billions of dollars, they started showing increasing interest in investment or expansion of work in Iran.

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