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12/28/11

Iran Oil Minister push for expanding Caspian Sea explorations

Source: Tehran Times

Iranian Oil Minister Rostam Qasemi has set a one-month deadline for a number of his deputies to accelerate explorations across the Caspian Sea, especially in Golestan Province.

Caspian Sea States

Seyed Ali Taheri, a Majlis member, told the Pana news agency that the oil minister has ordered developing oil and gas explorations, both in onshore and offshore sections, along the Caspian Sea borders.

On December 11, Iran announced that it has discovered a large gas field in the Caspian Sea with at least 50 trillion cubic feet (some 1.4 trillion cubic meters) of reserves.

The huge gas field holds an estimated 8 billion barrels of crude oil, the managing director of Khazar Oil Company announced.

The field, in waters 700 meters deep, lies wholly within Iran's territorial waters, Oil Minister Rostam Qasemi explained.

Excluding this new discovery Iran has 11 trillion cubic meters of proven gas reserves in the Caspian Sea, he added.

Qasemi also announced that Iran is now the sole country in the region which has found access to the technology to drill wells in deep waters.

Previously, deputy oil minister Mohsen Khojaste-Mehr told the Mehr news agency that extensive operations are underway to explore new gas deposits across the country which will probably increase the country's proven gas reserves.

The fifth five-year development plan (2010-2015) has envisaged boosting the country's gas production by 250 million cubic meters per day to reach 1.4 billion cubic meters per day.

Iran holds the world's second-largest gas reserves, according to the BP Statistical Review of World Energy in June. Russia has the biggest reserves of the fuel, BP data show.

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