President to inaugurate Iran-Alborz drilling rig

Iran Materials 23 July 2009 16:38 (UTC +04:00)

The Iran-Alborz semisubmersible drilling rig in the Caspian Sea is going to be officially inaugurated tomorrow.

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Oil Minister Gholam-Hossein Nozari, and National Iranian Oil Company's Managing Director Seyfollah Jashnsaz are scheduled to attend the inaugural ceremony, SHANA reported on Wednesday.

Talking to SHANA Jashnsaz said: "If the project was implemented by foreign contractors the cost would exceed $450 million. However, with the utilization of domestic expertise the cost was reduced to $80 million. All the construction, installation, and operation works of the drilling rig have been carried out by Iranian experts."

The semisubmersible drilling rig can operate at water depths up to 1,030 meters and drill down to 6,000 meters under the seabed.

The rig weighs 14,000 tons without its attachments and will facilitate exploration in deep waters in southern part of the Caspian Sea.

Iran plans to drill an exploratory well in the Caspian Sea as the preliminary step for the operation of the Iran-Alborz semisubmersible drilling rig.

According to estimates, the southern part of the Caspian Sea holds at least 32 billion barrels of oil reserves.