Iran to start building key gas condensate refinery in weeks

May 31, 2015 - 0:0

TEHRAN - Iran will launch the large Siraf refinery project in the second half of the third Iranian calendar month of Khordad (June 5-June 21), according to Alireza Sadeqabadi, the managing director of Siraf Refineries Infrastructure Company.

Sadeqabadi said the project, which includes construction of eight gas condensate refineries, will be launched in the presence of Iranian First Vice President Es’haq Jahangiri, the IRNA news agency reported on Saturday.

Siraf refinery in the coastal city of Assaluyeh near the South Pars offshore gas field is projected to have the output of 480,000 barrels per day (bpd) of gas condensate.

Iran, which sits on the world's largest natural gas reserves, has been trying to enhance its gas production by attracting foreign and domestic investment, especially in its supergiant offshore South Pars gas field.

The South Pars gas field, which Iran shares with Qatar in the Persian Gulf, contains significant amounts of gas and condensate.

Sales of condensate from South Pars supplement Iran’s crude oil exports, which are constrained by international sanctions. Condensate exports face no such constraints so long as they go to buyers permitted under U.S. sanctions to purchase Iranian crude. Sales of condensate doubled last year to about 200,000 bpd and contributed to total Iranian oil shipments in April of about 1.3 million bpd, according to the International Energy Agency.

Iran is negotiating with six world powers to end a dispute over its nuclear program with an accord that would remove the curbs on its oil and financial industries.