Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez on Sunday announced that the country’s state-run oil company will explore and exploit phase 12 of Iran’s giant South Pars gas field.
Speaking in a weekly television program, Chavez said that Petroleos De Venezuela S.A (PDVSA) is beginning to make inroads in the exploration and exploitation of large gas reserves in Iran.
“They (Iranians) gave us a starter, access to the (phase) 12 of the South Pars field,” Chavez noted.
Tehran and Caracas reached an agreement in early September to develop phase 12 of the South Pars gas field in the south of Iran during Chavez’s visit to Iran.
Iran has defined over 20 phases of development for the South Pars gas field, which has reserves of about 14 trillion cubic meters of gas – or about eight percent of the world’s reserves.
The ninth and tenth phases of the field were inaugurated by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in March.
Early in September, Managing Director of the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) Seyfollah Jashnsaz announced that Iran would start implementation of the development projects of the remaining phases of the South Pars gas field in the near future.
“Right now, development of 7 phases of the South Pars field are underway… and we predict that the development projects of the remaining phases will soon start,” Jashnsaz said.
He further voiced pleasure with the proper speed in the implementation of the development projects of phases 12, 15, 16, 17, 18, adding that the relevant responsibilities for the start of operations in phases 19, 20 and 21 had also been entrusted to contractors.
In June, Iran and China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) signed a contract for development of the upstream sector of phase 11 in the offshore South Pars gas field.