Oil Minister: Iran Sets Record in Building Refineries despite Sanctions

Iranian Oil Minister Rostam Qassemi downplayed the effects of sanctions on the country’s progress in the oil and gas industries, and said Iran has managed to set a record in building refineries in recent years.

“Iran has set a record in building refineries by reliance on the Iranian forces (experts),” Qassemi said, addressing a ceremony to inaugurate three petrochemical projects in Southern Iran on Monday.

Iran on Monday officially inaugurated three important petrochemical industry projects in the country’s Mahshahr Petrochemical Special Economic Zone.

The projects include the polyvinyl chloride (PVC) production line at Arvand Petrochemical Complex, the oxygen and nitrogen production line at Maroon Petrochemical Plant and the second liquids loading pier at Mahshahr Petrochemical Special Economic Zone.

Qassemi referred to the 62-percent progress in the South Pars Refinery Construction Project in Southern Iran during the last 21 months, and said such progress is “desirable and good”, taking into account the different western sanctions imposed on Iran’s oil industry.

The Iranian oil minister had also earlier this year stressed Iran’s self-sufficiency in producing the needed parts for its oil industry, and said Iran is trying to cut its dependence on foreign suppliers in this regard completely.

“Tehran has no concern about its technical needs and is capable of building whatever its oil industry needs,” Qassemi said in January, addressing the Christian staff members of Petroleum Ministry on the occasion of felicitating the Christian New Year, 2012.

Also in 2011, a senior Iranian gas official had said that Iran is able to produce and supply all the parts needed for its gas refineries.

Speaking to reporters in Iran’s Southern port city of Assalouyeh, Director for Coordination and Supervision of the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) Mehdi Jamshidi Dana said that the company has implemented several projects to maintain self-sufficiency in the production of the parts needed for its gas refineries.

He said that establishment of a data bank for spare parts and chemical materials, a data bank of the local resources of parts for gas refineries, the technical specifications of the needed spare parts and setting up of self-sufficiency committees are among the projects implemented for reaching and maintaining the self sufficiency.

Jamshidi Dana further announced that 160 projects are currently underway in the country’s gas refineries in a bid to increase production capacity and boost stability in gas production.

Iran has the world’s second-largest reserves of natural gas (15% of the world’s total).

Iran possesses roughly 10 percent of the world’s total proven petroleum reserves as well.

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