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South Pars gas field

The field, located in the Iranian waters of the Persian Gulf, is shared with Qatar, where it is known as the North Field.

South Pars gas field

The field, located in the Iranian waters of the Persian Gulf, is shared with Qatar, where it is known as the North Field
  • located 3,000 m below the seabed
  • at a water depth of 65 m.
  • was discovered by the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) in 1990
  • Estimated to hold 8% of the world’s total gas reserves
The entire North field including the Qatar portion occupies 9,700 km², whereas South Pars in Iranian waters is the most productive portion of the field and covers 3,700 km².

With an estimated 14.2 trillion m3 of gas reserves in place plus 18 billion barrels of gas condensate, South Pars already accounts for around 40 % of Iran’s total estimated 33.8 trillion m 3  of gas reserves and about 60 % of its gas production.

The South Pars gas field commenced production in 2002 and continues to be developed in multiple phases by the Pars Oil and Gas Company (POGC), a subsidiary of NIOC.

The giant offshore gas field comprises 28 production blocks, which are being developed in 24 phases with a target to produce a total of 790 million m 3 / d of gas.

Total 10 out of the 24 phases of the South Pars gas development project are currently in operation, while the remaining 14 phases are expected to be brought into production by 2021.

The ownership structure of the $4.8 billion South Pars phase-11 development project has undergone significant changes following the USA’s decision to withdraw from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), popularly known as the Iran nuclear deal, in May 2018.

With France not exempted to do trade and business with Iran, Total had limited choice but to sell its 50.1% stake in the South Pars Phase-11.
Total officially left the Soth Pars phase-11 development in August 2018.

Chinese CNCP, which already has 30% stake in the project, reportedly agreed to buy Total’s stake and hold 80.1% ownership interest in the project, in November 2018.
The remaining 19.9% interest in the project will be retained by the Pars Oil and Gas Company.

The long-stalled Phase 11 development supposedly saw the withdrawal of all Chinese involvement in October 2019.
In reality, though, China is still intimately involved in its development and is looking to further scale up its activities following the inauguration of Joe Biden as U.S. President on 20 January this year.