Early production may damage Iranian energy reserves
Azerbaijan, Baku, April 19/ Trend, D.Khatinoglu/
Iran has announced on April 18 that early gas production from the South Pars field's Phases 15 and 16 has started, but ethic Iranian expert and chief of the Energy Security Division at the Energy Studies Institute Dr. Hooman Peimani told Trend that early production may damage the fields if exploitation starts before the reserve's stabilization.
On March 14, the Mehr news agency quoted Deputy Oil Minister Javad Owji as saying that once six more phases of Iran's South Pars gas field come on stream, the gas field's output will be increased by 200 million cubic meters (mcm) per day to 500mcm.
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.
Peimani said if Iran starts early gas production from gas fields before stabilizing itself, the risk of damaging gas reserves or wells is high.
Regarding Iran's three-year delay to complete the six remained walls of South Pars' Phases 9 and 10 after starting early production in 2009, Peimani says the major obstacle facing Iran in developing South Pars is technical and financial problems.
Iran has commissioned eight phases so far and each phase produces 25 mcm/d of gas. The Phases 9 and 10 have not been completed yet and they are producing 42 mcm/d of gas.
About 19 phases of South Pars are under construction, while only the Chinese CNPCI company participates in this project. Iran says it planned to complete each phase in 35 months.
The head of the South Pars Oil and Gas Company (SP), Mousa Souri said earlier that during the past solar year, $7 billion from buy back contracts, domestic reserves and banks has been attracted to the South Pars.
Meanwhile only 110, 000 billion rials (about $9 billion based on the USD's official rate in Iran) from 210,000 billion rails approved budget for South Pars has been allocated to this project.
According to experts and officials' estimations, each phase of South Pars needs averagely $5 billion.