Iran to continue gasoline imports until March 2015

Tehran, Iran, May 30

By Milad Fashtami - Trend:

Iran will continue to import gasoline at least until the end of current fiscal year (March 20, 2015).

Managing director of National Iranian Oil Refining and Distribution Company (NIORDC), Abbas Kazemi, said on May 30 that the country has averagely imported 8 million liters of gasoline per day in the first two months of the current Iranian calendar year (March 21 - May 20), Iran's SHANA News Agency reported.

He went on to note that the country's gasoline reserves stands at around 1.9 billion liters, which is more than the figures registered in the same period the previous years.

Seyed Mohsen Qamsari, an official with the National Iranian Oil Company, said that the company is not in favor of importing gasoline to the country.

"National Iranian Oil Refining and Distribution Company (NIORDC) should explain why the country is still exporting gasoline," he said. "Iran spends NIORDC's revenues to import gasoline."

He went on to note that the country is not bartering oil for gasoline.

Kazemi, said previously that importing gasoline is economically justified for Iran.

Iran's Deputy Oil Minister Hossein Zarabbi also said on May 20 that none of the officials are in favor of importing anything into the country, but the nation's needs should be met, so gasoline import for Iran is inevitable.

"Iran has even experienced importing 35 million liters of gasoline per day in the past," he said, adding that CNG consumption has lowered the country's need to import gasoline considerably.

Iran's oil ministry announced on May 14 that it plans to construct 1,000 new CNG stations across the country.

Once the stations come on stream, Iran's gasoline consumption would be cut by over 20 million liters, Iran's IRIB News Agency reported on May 14.

Currently about 2,175 CNG stations are operational across Iran. The country's gasoline consumption is around 65 million liters per day.

Kazemi, said on May 11 that the average figure was around 3.5 million liters previous year, Iran's Tasnim News Agency reported.

"If the country's consumption rises, we need to import more gasoline," he explained.

Iran's Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said that once Persian Gulf Start refinery's gasoline production unit comes on stream, the country no longer needs to import gasoline.

The facility will come on stream next Iranian calendar year (to start on March 21, 2015).

Kazemi previously said that Iran's gasoline reserves currently stand at over 2 billion liters.

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