By Abdul Kerimkhanov
Petrochemical production in the country could be doubled to $ 40 billion, said Bijan Zanganeh, Iran's oil minister.
He added that doubling petrochemical production is quite doable.
Zanganeh said that the Oil Ministry could barely produce petrochemical products in the amount of $ 1 billion in 1997 when he took the post of the head. Production has now reached $ 20 billion a year, he added.
The minister stressed that about $ 5.5 billion of current production capacity is distributed domestically for the purchase of raw materials for petrochemical plants.
Zanganeh also stressed that the state of Iranian oil technology is incomparable with what it was 20 years ago, saying that at the moment, Iran can build even the most complex oil platforms, and this progress will definitely continue.
Iran's petrochemical industry counts more than half a century. The National Petrochemical Company began work in Iran under the state leadership of the Iranian National Oil Company in 1963. The first project of the company was based on the chemical fertilizer production in the city of Shiraz in the south-east of Iran.
Work of port complex named Imam Khomeini led to the fact that in one decade the petrochemical industry of Iran has reached world standards in terms of quality and quantitative standards.
Essential properties of this period are the increase in the volume and economic value of products, as well as the improvement of the petrochemical industry position in the national economy and the export of non-oil products of Iran. Iran's petrochemical industry has begun to play a more prominent and more efficient role in regional and global markets.
Petrochemical products make up the largest volume in the statistical tablet of Iranian non-oil products export, which is more than 40 percent of the total non-oil export of the country.
Iran exports its petrochemical products to several dozen countries in different parts of the world. As many as 13 percent of products are exported to the Indian subcontinent, 23 percent to the Southeast Asia countries, 22 percent to the China, 18 percent to the countries of the Far East, 5 percent to Europe and 19 percent to the Middle East.
Despite the sanctions imposed against the export of Iranian oil, and consistently, the decline in oil exports, the sanctions imposed did not affect the export of petrochemical products.
During the period of sanctions, one of the resources of Iran’s foreign exchange earnings was the petrochemical industry. The Iranian petrochemical industry has a variety of properties that attract Iranian and foreign investors. The most important feature of the industry is the presence of rich oil and gas resources to provide the necessary raw materials from the petrochemicals production.
Iran ranks 4th in the world in terms of oil resources and uses the second largest gas reserves in the world.
An important feature of Iran’s petrochemical industry is country's excellent geographical location and good access to Asian and European markets, as well as free seas, which makes it easier and cheaper to export and transport.
Iran is the only state in the Middle East that produces a large amount of necessary equipment for the petrochemical industry on its territory.
Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94
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