Iran to issue $500 million in oil bonds

Azerbaijan, Baku, Nov.7/ Trend G.Mehdi/

The Iranian Offshore Oil Company (IOC) will issue $500 million worth of bonds to finance oil projects in the current Iranian calendar year, which ends on March 20, 2013, ISNA quoted IOOC Managing Director Mahmoud Zirakchianzadeh as saying.

IOOC also plans to issue 7.5 trillion rials (about $610 million) by December 5, he added.

In July, an official at the Iranian Oil Ministry said the Central Bank of Iran has opened a $10 billion line of credit for a number of domestic oil projects in the upstream sector.

"Benefiting from 18 percent of assets of the National Development Fund; issuing $10 billion in foreign currency bonds; issuing 15 trillion rials in bonds; and selling $10 billion worth of shares and properties of the Oil Ministry are among other sources of finance for the oil projects," Mohsen Khojasteh-Mehr told the Shana News Agency.

Oil Minister Rostam Qasemi said in April that at least $30 billion will be invested in the domestic oil industry this year.

He added that a major portion of the amount will be allocated to the South Pars gas field projects.

The South Pars gas field is shared by Iran and Qatar. The Iranian share, which is divided into 29 phases, has about 14 trillion cubic meters of gas, or about eight percent of the total world reserves, and more than 18 billion barrels of liquefied natural gas resources.

Qasemi stressed that the global economic sanctions against the Islamic Republic would not hinder the country's oil industry development.

The oil ministry is committed to accelerating the implementation of its development plans, financed through the financial system and through government bonds, he said.

Iran holds second place in the world after Russia in terms of natural gas reserves.

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