Iran to start drilling operations in South Pars field

Oil&Gas Materials 28 January 2012 15:40 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, Jan. 28/ Trend M. Moezzi /

Iran will begin extracting oil from the joint South Pars field's oil layer in four months, the Iranian Students' News Agency (ISNA) quoted an official as saying.

The extraction from the layer should begin in May-June, Mousa Souri, the head of the South Pars Gas Company, said.

The K1 oil block was turned over to the Petroiran Development Company for the drilling operations in six oil wells. A special drilling platform is being built in Bandar Abbas. About 80 percent was finished, Mr. Souri said.

Up to now about $500 million have been spent on this project.

Iran does not have a pipeline to transport oil its extracts from the offshore oil layer and must buy a Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) ship. An FPSO vessel costs about $800 million and could store between 800 to 800,000 barrels of oil.
South Pars' oil layer holds approximately 7.5 billion barrels of oil. If 10 percent of this oil is extractable, 750 million barrels can be drawn from the field. Iran expects to produce 25,000 barrels of oil a day from the K1 layer.

Iran and Qatar share 9,700 square kilometer South Pars oil and gas field. Qatar, however, is far ahead of Iran in exploiting the field's resources. It currenlty produces 400,000 barrels a day of crude oil.

Qatar began working on South Pars ten years before Iran. It has intensified developing the field while Iran suffers international sanctions, technical and financial obstacles.