5 new petchem projects to go operational by late June

March 15, 2021 - 14:15

TEHRAN – Five new major petrochemical projects are scheduled to go operational across the country during the first quarter of the next Iranian calendar year (March 21-June 21), the project manager of the National Petrochemical Company (NPC) announced.

According to Amir Vakilzadeh, the mentioned projects will be inaugurated as part of the second leap of the country’s petrochemical industry.

The official noted that the said projects were planned to be inaugurated in the current year, however, their execution faced some problems due to the restrictions created by the coronavirus pandemic.

Some 17 petrochemical projects worth about $12 billion were planned to be inaugurated across the country in the current year to realize the second leap of the industry, of which 12 have been put into operation, Vakilzadeh said.

The new projects are aimed at increasing Iran’s annual petrochemical production by 35 percent in the present year, according to NPC Managing Director Behzad Mohammadi.

The petrochemical industry plays a crucial role in Iran’s non-oil economy, as the petrochemical export is the second-largest source of revenue for the country after crude oil. Petrochemical exports already constitute nearly 33 percent of the country’s non-oil exports.

Iran has been highly developing this sector over the recent years as the development of the giant South Pars gas field (Iran shares with Qatar in the Persian Gulf) has been supplying more feedstock to the petrochemical units.

Also, the U.S. sanctioning Iran’s oil exports has encouraged more development of the petrochemical industry to boost exports from this sector.

Now, pursuing the second and third leap in this sector, the country aims to boost its annual petrochemical production capacity to 100 million tons in the next Iranian calendar year (March 2021-March 2022) from the current 66 million tons.

While the leap in the petrochemical output is a big measure to boost Iran’s non-oil exports, it also plays a very significant role in the realization of the current Iranian calendar year’s motto, which is “Surge in Production”.

The already released data and reports indicate that the petrochemical sector has been moving in the way of growth since the year start (March 20, 2020), as the output of petrochemical units has increased by six percent in the first 10 months of the current Iranian calendar year (March 20, 2020-January 19, 2021) compared to the same period last year.

According to Jalal Mirhashemi, NPC's production control manager, about three percent of this production growth has been related to the increase in production of existing units, and the rest is due to the inauguration of new complexes.

Balanced development of the petrochemical industry has also been of particular interest among the NPC strategies for the current year since the development of downstream industries will prevent the sale of raw materials and result in the production of products with higher added value.

Most of the underway projects in this industry are currently using domestic equipment, licenses, and technological knowledge of the Iranian experts.

EF/MA

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