Iran has started pumping oil from the offshore South Pars gas field, with seven wells operating on the oil layer, an official from National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) said.
Production will reach full capacity within a week, Shana news agency said, quoting Gholam-Reza Manouchehri, deputy managing director of NIOC’s engineering and development affairs.
Manouchehri said production from the layer will reach 35,000 barrels per day once its wells are fully operational.
Iran has recently signed a string of deals with international oil companies to renovate its oil and gas infrastructure and develop its oilfields after years of sanctions held it back from access to technology.
OPEC's No. 3 oil producer hopes its new Iran Petroleum Contracts (IPCs), which are part of efforts to sweeten the terms offered on oil development deals, will draw foreign companies and boost output after years of under-investment.
South Pars, a supergiant gas field Iran shares with Qatar in Persian Gulf waters, is estimated to contain over 14 billion barrels of oil in its oil layer.
Operation of the oil layer of the gas field began parallel with the anniversary of nationalisation of oil industry in Iran.
Oil recovery from the oil layer of the offshore gas field began after NIOC dispatched a floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) unit over the layer.
“By the time the FPSO recovers and processes a certain amount of crude oil from the South Pars oil layer, an oil tanker will berth next to it for loading,” said Manouchehri, adding that the first crude oil consignment from the field will be ready for shipment in a matter of 30 to 45 days.
The Cyrus FPSO unit was dispatched to its designated offshore spot in February.