Iran signs $80bln worth of oil deals with foreign investors: Tehran
Iran is bolstering its economic sector, signing MoUs worth more than $80 billion with foreign sectors to finance oil projects.
Iran has signed more than $80 billion in memoranda of understanding with international investors to participate in the financing of oil projects, with more than $5 billion transformed into contracts, Petroleum Deputy Minister Houshang Falahatpour said Monday, as quoted by Iranian media.
"The policy of the Ministry of Petroleum in the 13th government has been to make maximum use of the financing capacity from within the country," Falahatpour told Fars news agency.
"Hence, we have directed the capital of banks and large holdings of the country to the oil industry. For example, we opened the door to steelmakers to invest in the development of gas fields," he added.
The official also underlined the necessity of using these industries' financial might to provide them with stable gas, noting that this means that a steel company investing in the development of gas fields would be exempted from applying restrictions on gas supply when the weather is colder, as it will receive gas from the developed field.
He revealed that Iran detailed discussions with international partners to attract investment to the country, revealing the aforementioned figures and adding that "more than $5 billion of this amount has been converted into contracts, and the rest, God willing, will be converted into contracts one after the other."
Tehran estimates that it is the holder of the world’s largest oil and gas reserves combined, and at current recovery rates, it can continue to produce hydrocarbon resources for another century, though sustainable production in the industry requires investment and the use of sophisticated equipment.
According to Falahatpour, the Islamic Republic is trying to make up for the shortcomings in the field of investment by maximizing the use of domestic capacities and developing ties with neighboring and Asian states.
This comes after the head of the National Iranian Oil Company said his country was planning on boosting its oil and gas production capacity by 50%, for which it would require $160 million in investment.
The state, the official said, would need to invest $89 billion in oil and $71 billion in gas. "With this investment, the oil production capacity will reach 5.7 million barrels and the gas production capacity will hit 1.5 billion cubic meters per day," he told the Iranian news agency IRNA during an interview.
The government of President Ebrahim Raisi is implementing 32 production maintenance projects signed by its predecessor, the government of former President Hassan Rouhani, with numerous plans, seven, to be exact, to increase recovery and maintain production becoming in place, and the rest being close to becoming operational.
The head of the National Iranian Oil Company, Mohsen Khojasteh-Mehr, revealed that the total value of contracts signed with Russian investors is $4.5 billion, adding that they involve seven Iranian oil fields.
The revelations regarding Iran's booming energy sector come less than a month after Iranian Oil Minister Javad Owji revealed that Tehran's oil exports have reached their highest level in the past four years amid unilateral sanctions imposed by the United States.
"We exported 83 million more oil barrels since 21st March 2022 compared to the same period last year. This represents 190 million more oil barrels exported compared to the period March 2021 to March 2022," Owji said.
Ever since Iran gained complete autonomy following its 1979 revolution, the country has been the target of excruciating sanctions imposed by the West.
Since Washington withdrew in 2018 from the 2015 Iranian nuclear deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), it reimposed harsh unilateral sanctions against Tehran and its oil exports and revenues, with only a few countries purchasing Iranian crude.
In early February, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi pointed out that the increase in Iran's oil sales and production are things that anger its enemies.