Iran Economy NewsIran targets $46 billion in refinery investments, Deputy Oil...

Iran targets $46 billion in refinery investments, Deputy Oil Minister says

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Bloomberg: Iran needs to invest about $46 billion to upgrade its nine refineries and build seven new ones, Deputy Oil Minister Alireza Zeighami said.

Bloomberg

By Ladane Nasseri

Iran needs to invest about $46 billion to upgrade its nine refineries and build seven new ones, Deputy Oil Minister Alireza Zeighami said.

More than half of this amount, or $26 billion, will go toward the planned construction of new refineries, for which Iran has allocated about $8.5 billion, Zeighami said, according to a report published yesterday on Shana, the Oil Ministry’s news website.

Iran is the second-largest oil producer in the Middle East after Saudi Arabia. It relies on imports for as much as 40 percent of its gasoline because it lacks adequate refining capacity to meet domestic demand.

Iran has been subjected to four rounds of United Nations sanctions over its nuclear program. President Barack Obama expanded U.S. sanctions on July 1 to target Iranian gasoline imports and banking transactions.

Iran needs to spend $6.3 billion to maintain production capacity at existing refineries and has already invested about one-third of this amount, Zeighami said.

The Persian Gulf country aims also to spend $11.5 billion to optimize production at its five refineries in Tehran, Lavan, Abadan, Arak and Isfahan. The government has already invested about $4 billion for this purpose, Shana cited Zeighami as saying.

Iran wants to spend an additional $2 billion on facilities specifically for making gasoline, of which it has invested some $1.3 billion so far, the deputy minister said.

The government plans to import up to 4 million liters (1.1 million gallons) of diesel oil to increase fuel reserves in the country’s power plants, a separate report by the state-run Mehr news agency quoted Zeighami as saying. The report gave no further details.

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