Iran's oil production not halted by coronavirus outbreak: Zanganeh

May 13, 2020 - 14:33

TEHRAN – Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh says the coronavirus outbreak has not halted oil production in the country, Shana reported.

Speaking in a meeting attended by First Vice President Es’haq Jahangiri and his deputies, Zanganeh elaborated on the Oil Ministry’s measures for containing coronavirus, saying that the ministry has made serious efforts to prevent any stoppage in the oil production while protecting the workforce.

Oil Ministry’s measures have been taken in four phases of prevention, readiness, confrontation and returning to normal condition, the official said.

He further added that all activities of the oil industry like basic repairing in the South Pars phases and activities of phases 13, 14 and 21-24 have been resumed.

Mentioning the drastic fall of the global oil prices and the U.S. sanctions along the pandemic, Zanganeh pointed to the fall of refineries’ profitability as well as the reduction of petrochemical price as negative impacts of COVID-19 on the oil industry.

Back in March, Zanganeh and Head of National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) Masoud Karbasian had discussed necessary measures for containing the coronavirus in the Iranian oil industry’s operational areas.

In the meeting the oil minister also discussed ways of preventing the spread of coronavirus in the oil, gas, refining and petrochemical operational areas with his deputies and managers of operating companies via videoconference.

Managing Director of Pars Oil and Gas Company (POGC) Mohammad Meshkinfam, Managing Director of National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) Hassan Montazer Torbati, Alireza Sadeq-Abadi, the managing director of National Iranian Oil Refining and Distribution Company (NIORDC), and Managing Director of Iranian Oil Terminals Company (IOTC) Pirouz Mousavi, as well as Head of Iranian Offshore Oil Company (IOOC) Alireza Salmanzadeh were among the officials who attended the meeting via video conference.

At the end of the meeting, the officials emphasized that the priority of the country’s oil industry is maintaining the health and safety of employees and increasing the level of health services in order to prevent the spread of the virus and contain it.

Earlier that month, head of National Iranian Drilling Company (NIDC) had also said that despite the coronavirus outbreak, all operations in the country’s oil and gas rigs are ongoing in full compliance with safety and healthcare standards.

EF/MA

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