Baku, Azerbaijan, May 29
By Fatih Karimov -
Iran started construction of 17 petrochemical plants in Chabahr port, Gulf of Oman, aimed at producing 22 million tons of petrochemical projects in nine years.
A member of the Trade Promotion Organization of Iran Abdolhamid Asadiyan said that a pipeline for transferring methane has been constructed from Aaslouyeh (close to giant South Pars gas field in the Persian Gulf) to Chabahr port, close to the Pakistan border and the second pipeline for transferring ethane would be constructed to feed petrochemical plants.
Iran has almost completed a methane (natural gas) pipeline, called Peace Pipeline to deliver gas to southeastern regions as well as export gas to Pakistan, but the country has also a plan to convert the Chabahar port to an international trade hub in Gulf of Oman.
Chabahar is Iran's closest and best access point to the Indian Ocean, a potential rival for Pakistan's Gwadar port with 150 km distance.
Pakistan and China signed a $46-billion investment package including $660 million in funds to develop Gwadar port.
A month after that Iran and India signed a memorandum of understanding to develop Chabahar port with putting $85 million and $110 million investment in the first and second phases respectively. The first phase of Chabahar, which has been developed by 65 percent, needs another $350 million investment.
Asadiyan says Gwadar port is not in a position to compete with Chabahar due to instability and other obstacles.
Fars News Agency reported May 29 that construction of ethane pipeline is expected to start in near future.
Iran produced 44 million tons of petrochemical products of which 14.5 million tons were exported last fiscal year, ended March 20. However, the nominal petrochemical production capacity in Iran is about 60 million tons per year. The country has $30 billion worth project to increase this figure to 100 million tons.
One of these projects is construction of 17 plants in Chabahar. In the first phase of this project, some 2.5 million tons of solid and 6 million tons of liquid petrochemicals would be produced. The second phase would add some 2.53 million and 7 million of solid and liquid petrochemical products to the output.
The solid and liquid petrochemical products would increase by 2.15 million and 2 million tons respectively.
The major products would be methanol, Ammonia, ethylene, ethanol, light and heavy poly-ethylene, various glycol kinds, aromatic, Methanol-to-propylene.
Edited by CN