Iranian Gas Engineering and Development Company says pipeline could be ready before the end of August
Managing Director of the Iranian Gas Engineering and Development Company Alireza Gharibi said the company finished testing 100 kilometers (about 62 miles) of pipeline that will run from Iran to neighboring Iraq. Gharibi said the company hopes to export natural gas to Iraq in 20 days, reports Iran’s PressTV.
“At present, we are discharging water from the pipeline and after a few final tests, which will take to the end of this month, the pipeline will be ready for exports,” Gharibi was quoted as saying by the Oil Ministry’s official SHANA news agency.
Gharibi said that the first phase of the projects operations will have a capacity of 5 million cubic meters (Mcf/d) of gas to Iraq and the figure will rise after the completion of the Sixth Iranian Gas Trunkline (IGAT-6). “When the second section of the Sixth Iranian Gas Trunkline is completed by the end of the current [Iranian] year (ends on March 19, 2016) … it will be possible to export as much as 25 Mcf/d of gas to Iraq,” Gharibi added.
Iran and Iraq signed an agreement for the export of natural gas from Iran’s South Pars field in 2013 for the supply of 25 Mcf/d of gas to Sadr, Baghdad and al-Mansouryah power plants. The projects have been delayed due to security concerns over the ongoing conflict with ISIS in the region.
As negotiations with Iran regarding the country’s nuclear program continue to move towards an end to the international sanctions on Iran’s crude oil exports, the country’s Oil Ministry has set goals for billions of dollars of investment to improve both its crude oil and natural gas infrastructure. “Bringing in investment for natural gas development is a top priority,” Dr. Iman Nasseri of international energy consulting group FGE told Oil & Gas 360®.
“The future of natural gas development will be rapid,” he said. “FGE’s expectations were, even without the lifting of sanctions, that development would be finished in about 10 years. With investment, it will be much faster. I believe we will see 7-8 Bcf/d from South Pars in the next 5-6 years.” More than half of that production will likely be sold as exports, Nasseri said.