Multinational consortium to study Iranian gas reserves

The National Iranian Oil Co. (NIOC) and nine international oil firms have agreed to undertake a study of Iranian gas reserves with a 25-year projection period, according to a report by the OPEC News Agency. The study will identify and quantify gas reserves, estimate domestic consumption levels, and determine the feasibility of gas exports.


The National Iranian Oil Co. (NIOC) and nine international oil firms have agreed to undertake study of Iranian gas reserves with a 25-year projection period, according to a report by the OPEC News Agency.

Keyhan Karbasi�director of UK independent Lasmo PLC's Iranian business unit�told a reporter in Tehran that the study would identify and quantify gas reserves, estimate domestic consumption levels, and determine the feasibility of gas exports. The comments were made on the sidelines of a recent oil, gas, and petrochemicals conference.

Companies participating will include Lasmo, BP Amoco PLC, Royal Dutch/Shell, Gas de France, BG PLC, BHP Petroleum Pty. Ltd., Petronas, Agip SPA, and TotalFinaElf SA. Karbasi said the benefits of the study for the international companies would included further familiarity with gas reserves in Iran.

Lasmo is a member of a consortium that is exploring the Iranian sector of the Caspian Sea. NIOC, Shell, and Lasmo joined together in late 1998 to undertake an 18-month seismic survey of the Southern Caspian, some of it in an area Azerbaijan claims to be its own (OGJ, Dec. 21, 1998, p. 34). Germany's Veba Oel AG later joined the consortium.

Andrew Wright, director of Lasmo's Middle East and Caspian Sea affairs, said that, after preliminary studies are completed in July, a contract would be signed with NIOC for the joint exploration of the area.

On the kinds of contracts to be employed for the development and expansion of the hydrocarbon resources in the Iranian sector of the Caspian, he added that proposals had been made to NIOC, but no agreement had been reached. Wright further said that, although buy-back schemes are not appropriate in this context, opinion could not be expressed on the kind of agreement that would be signed until all the technical work had been completed.

Lasmo is also negotiating with NIOC on expansion of the Darkhovin and Abe-Tymore fields, he added.

More in Reserves