FM mulls over Arash joint field with Kuwait, S Arabia

TEHRAN, Feb. 21 (MNA) – An oil official has reported on the launch of talks with Kuwait and Saudi Arabia over development of Arash joint oilfield.

On latest status of negotiations held with global oil companies on expansion of Iranian oil fields in the Persian Gulf, NIOC Director for Corporate Planning Affairs Karim Zobeidi said development of Esfandiar, Foruzan, Farzad A & B, Salman and Hengam oil fields were high on the agenda.

The official also pointed to the latest status of Arash field explaining “the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has begun talks with Kuwaiti and Saudi sides over expansion of the joint oilfield.”

Situated in northwest side of Persian Gulf and surrounded by Iran, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, Arash oil field possess over one trillion cubic meters of natural gas and 310 million barrels of crude oil in place.

Last year, Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) and Saudi Aramco Company formed a consortium entitled Khafji Joint Operations (KJO) in a bid to develop Arash oil and gas field as an explorative well was also drilled in the region.

Zobeidi also referred to the project for Hengam joint oilfield with Oman saying “despite the drop in its pressure, Hengam field contains a precious type of oil.”

“Meanwhile, Iran’s negotiations with the Omani side for joint recovery from the field have failed to yield results,” he added.

He underlined that Hengam oilfield contains extra light crude oil stating “development of the oilfield remains in early descriptive stages though crude recovery will become operational as much as possible.”

The oil and gas field, covering an area of 288km², straddles the sea border between Iran and Oman, with about 80% of the oil field lying in the Iranian territory. The first well of the field was drilled by NIOOC in 1975. Appraisal drilling of the offshore field started in 2005 by National Iranian Offshore Oil Company (NIOOC). It is estimated to contain 700 million barrels of oil and two trillion cubic feet of gas.

Oman however began oil recovery from the joint field a few years earlier than Iran and in collaboration with a British firm and with an initial output rate of 10 thousand barrels per day. Despite the delay, Iran’s output soon climbed to 28 thousand barrels per day though the figure is plunging at the moment.

At another part of his remarks, the official at National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) touched upon development of Esfandiar joint oil field with Saudi Arabia explaining “so far, several foreign firms have made proposals for the project though the one offered by a Norwegian company has been more appropriate.”

The official stressed the negotiations were underway with the Norwegian firm and other willing European companies.

Esfandiar joint oil field is expected to yield 12 thousand barrels of crude oil per day. Nearly 400 million euros of investment is required for development of the joint field.

HA/3913023  

News Code 123722

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