Iranian oil industry shines brightly despite shadow of sanctions

TEHRAN – Iran’s oil industry has once again proven that the West is wrong in its efforts to cripple the country’s progress towards development as local developer of joint oilfield project Azar wins Global Project Excellence award of the International Project Management Association (IPMA) Management Award in the mega projects section.

Sarvak Azar Engineering and Development Company (SAED), owned by the Petroleum Retirement Fund, which is in charge of the common Azar field, one of the most complex oil fields in the country, won the gold medal at IPMA Global Award for Project Excellence Management at a ceremony held on Wednesday in St. Petersburg.

Winning a gold medal in this global competition was achieved in a situation where US sanctions severed the Iranian oil industry’s ties to the global market and pushed domestic companies to develop technologically at an incredible rate to meet the demands of the world. industry needs.

This year, the assessment of various international projects based on the IPMA PEB model was carried out virtually by six international assessors from Poland, UK, Netherlands, Kazakhstan, Nepal and China.

Achieving this success is an indication of the potential and capabilities of the Islamic Republic in the oil and gas sector and shows how far the country can rise despite the weight of harsh sanctions dragging it down.

Azar, one of the common fields shared with Iraq, covers a total area of ​​482 square kilometers southeast of the city of Mehran in the western Iranian province of Ilam.

The field is estimated to have 2.5 billion barrels of oil in place. The volume of any oil reserves to be extracted from the Azar field is estimated at around 400 million barrels.

In July 2017, the Russian company Gazprom signed a cooperation agreement with the Iranian company for the engineering and construction of petroleum industries (OIEC) for the development of the oil field. In December 2017, the two companies submitted their joint plan to the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) to develop the field. However, the Russian company left the project in early 2018, and the OIEC took over.

As there are still no processing facilities installed at the location of this field, its output will be sent to the Dehloran oil field processing facilities via a 120 km pipeline.

In January, OIEC Director General Gholamreza Manouchehri said the field had reached full capacity during the first phase of development, producing 65,000 barrels per day (bpd) of oil. As part of the first phase of the plan, 18 wells were drilled in the field.

Emphasizing the complex geological conditions of the Azar field, the official said: “The complexity of the field made its development very difficult, and international companies which had previously carried out exploration work in this field, believed that they alone would be able to develop this area.

“However, domestic companies have taken over the development of the field, and the financing and implementation has been successfully carried out by relevant Iranian companies.”

According to Manouchehri, production from the field began in February 2017 with daily production of 15,000 barrels.

“That figure reached 30,000 barrels per day in 2018, and now the production of this common field has reached 65,000 barrels per day, which is very significant.”

Most of the financial resources for the project came from the National Development Fund (NDF) and the rest was provided by the OIEC, he said.

Manouchehri mentioned performing performance tests in this area, claiming that all wells and facilities in the first phase of field development have been commissioned since December 14, 2020, to be tested for potential problems.


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Margie D. Carlisle

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