SOCAR realizes contract on gas export to Iran

Oil&Gas Materials 15 January 2010 17:52 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, Jan. 15 / Trend E. Ismayilov /

At present, Azerbaijan exports gas to Iran on the basis of 1.2 million cubic meters per day, SOCAR's source said today.

"Daily gas volumes transported to Iran are at the level of 1.2 million cubic meters per day," a source said.

He said gas volumes transported to Iran include gas envisaged for Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic and gas stipulated within a short-term contract on Azerbaijani gas supplies signed between SOCAR and National Iranian Gas Export Company.

Gas for providing Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic, which has no common border with Azerbaijan, is delivered under swap operations.

About 1 million cubic meters per day is delivered to Iran to supply Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic, SOCAR head Rovnag Abdullayev said.

The contract signed between SOCAR and NIGEC envisages supplying Azerbaijani gas to Iran in the total amount of 100 million cubic meters (1.2 million cubic meters of gas per day) until March-April. Iran's north regions distant from major gas fields will be supplied with Azerbaijani gas.

The sides will sign a long-term contract for Azerbaijani gas supplies to Iran this summer.

Currently, work on preparation the contract is underway. Prior to its signing, Azerbaijan will complete the reconstruction of infrastructure, expansion of a gas compressor station in Astara and repair work on the Hajigabul-Astara pipeline. These operations will be carried out within the investment program worth more than 100 million manat.

Upon the long-term contract, the annual supply of Azerbaijani gas to Iran could reach 1.5 billion cubic meters and more.

Abdullayev said that this will enable to export 3-5 million cubic meters of gas per day to Iran. Currently, the infrastructure enables to transport Iran 2.2-2.3 million cubic meters of gas per day.

According to him, the work on the modernization and reconstruction of gas infrastructure in Azerbaijan will be completed by autumn of this year, after which it will be possible to increase gas exports to Iran.

Azerbaijan and Iran are connected with the Kazi-Magomed-Astara pipeline gas pipeline. Its length is 1474.5 kilometers, with 296.5 kilometers covering the territory of Azerbaijan. Its capacity is 10 billion cubic meters per year. This route is a branch of the Gazakh-Astara-Iran pipeline, which was put into operation in 1971.

Three compressor stations in Kazi-Magomed, Agdash and Gazakh have been built. Pipe diameter is 1,200 mm.

According to BP, gas production hit 116.3 billion cubic meters while using 117 billion cubic meters in 2008.