NIOC in Talks to Revive LNG Projects
In line with policies to expand liquefied natural gas exports, negotiations are underway with European and Asian gas giants to restart incomplete LNG projects, deputy for engineering and development affairs at the National Iranian Oil Company said.
“Iran should turn to LNG exports as shipment of liquefied gas is less risky compared to piped exports and is more cost-effective for long-distance consignments,” Gholamreza Manouchehri was quoted as saying by IRNA on Sunday.
According to the official, Russia, France, Romania, Lithuania and China have already shown interest in the LNG projects.
Asked about the country’s largest LNG project, known as “Iran LNG’, he said that the plan has made a 60% progress with $1.85 billion in investment before international sanctions were imposed. Talks are underway to complete it in two years at a total cost of $3-4 billion.
Manouchehri believes that Iran has the potential to break into the global LNG market, despite years of stalemate in such projects and a significant gap in production compared to rival producers in the region.
Manouchehri added that establishing small-scale and floating LNG (FLNG) units with 10 million tons in annual production capacity is another plausible scenario.
An FLNG facility is a seaborne structure that would produce, liquefy, store and transfer LNG at sea before carriers ship it directly to markets.
Iran has close to 34 trillion cubic meters of natural gas reserves, which is around 18% of the global gas reserves. It has been working on several major LNG projects for years to convert its rich gas reserves into revenue but to no avail.