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One of Iran’s top energy priorities this year would be developing onshore and offshore oil fields that it shares with neighboring countries, the official Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) quoted deputy oil minister Ali Kardar as saying on Monday.
The official named South Pars phase 11 (oil layer) and the Azadegan oil field as priority developments, and Iran hopes to sign contracts for them by the end of the current Iranian year, through March 20, 2018.
“The fields are on priority list and the Ministry of Petroleum emphasizes their development, as they are shared fields,” IRNA quoted Kardar as saying.
According to the official news agency, the official also noted that new oil contracts worth US$15 billion would be signed with international companies by the end of the Iranian year.
While Iran was under the Western sanctions, its neighbors developed their parts of the shared fields with the help of international companies, so Iran is now prioritizing shared fields development, according to Kardar.
Iran shares the South Pars (oil layer) with Qatar, where it is called Al Shaheen.
In March this year, Iran said it had started oil production from the oil layer, with full capacity output expected at 35,000 bpd.
The Azadegan oil field is shared by Iran and Iraq. Iran claims that the Azadegan oil field is its largest and holds 37 billion barrels of oil.
Last month, Iran’s Oil Minister Bijan Zangeneh told IRNA that the Islamic Republic had already invited international oil companies to participate in the tender for the development of the Azadegan oil field.
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On Sunday, Iran’s oil ministry’s news service Shana reported that Petronas, Shell, Total, and Inpex had submitted technical studies for Azadegan to the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), according to the managing director of Iran’s Petroleum Engineering and Development Company, Noureddin Shahnazizadeh.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.