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Iran, Saudi Arabia sign agreement to develop joint oilfield


Source: Mehr News Agency

Iran and Saudi Arabia have signed a deal to develop the Farzad A gas field, which is shared by the two countries in the Persian Gulf, Iranian Oil Minister Rostam Qasemi announced on Friday.

Qasemi also said the two sides will sign another contract next week to develop the Farzad B gas field and the Arash oilfield.

Speaking to reporters in Assalouyeh, south Iran, he added that the Oil Ministry has made comprehensive plans to accelerate the development of joint oil and gas fields in the Persian Gulf, the Pana news agency reported.

Iran is currently extracting some 240,000 barrels per day (bpd) of crude oil from oilfields shared with its neighbors and plans to boost the output to 950,000 bpd by 2015 (end of the fifth five-year development plan), the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) announced recently.

According to the NIOC, all development plans related to the joint oilfields will be launched in the current Iranian calendar year, which ends on March 19, 2012.

NIOC managing director Ahmad Qalebani has said that Iran's daily oil and gas outputs should amount to five million barrels and 1.47 billion cubic meters by 2015.

Qalebani announced in November that 20 contracts will be signed by the end of the current year to develop joint oilfields.

The oil minister has ordered all contractors of the South Pars gas field development projects to work round the clock in three shifts to complete development of all phases, especially the phases 12, 15, 16, 17 and 18.

Iran sits on the world's second largest natural gas reserves after Russia and is trying to grow its gas production by increasing foreign and domestic investments, especially in its South Pars gas field.

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.

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