Iran advances refinery, pipeline projects

Parsian Oil & Gas Development Co. (POGDC), Iran’s largest nongovernmental petrochemical holding, has entered an agreement with Italy’s Saipem SPA, Milan, to collaborate on future projects involving major overhauls designed to modernize two Iranian refineries under POGDC’s management.

POGDC and Saipem on Jan. 25 signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) under which the companies have agreed to maintain an ongoing dialogue regarding Saipem’s potential cooperation in the revamp and upgrade of Tabriz Oil Refining Co.’s 110,000-b/d refinery, southwest of Tabriz City, and Shiraz Oil Refining Co.’s 60,000-b/d refinery on the outskirts of Zarghan province, about 22 km from Shiraz City, the service company said.

Established in 2008 as a specialized holding company, POGDC manages a portfolio of subsidiaries that make it the Middle East’s largest producer of ammonia (2.5 million tpy) and urea (3.9 million tpy), according to the company’s web site.

POGDC also manages Iran’s Zagros Petrochemical Co., which produces 3.3 million tpy of methanol at its petrochemical complex in Pars Special Economic Energy Zone from feedstock supplied by Phases 1, 2, and 3 of South Pars gas field.

Pipeline MOU

Separately Saipem also has signed an MOU with National Iranian Gas Co. (NIGC) for possible cooperation on NIGC’s proposed Iran Gas Trunkline IX (IGAT 9) and Iran Gas Trunkline XI (IGAT 11) pipeline projects, which combined, would cover a distance of 1,800 km (OGJ, Feb. 2, 2015, p. 72), Saipem said.

Saipem did not disclose details regarding timelines or estimated values for projects under the MOUs.

Signed during Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s visit to Rome, the MOUs follow the recent suspension of long-standing international sanctions on Iran that prohibited US and many European firms from participating in development of the country’s energy sector.

Contact Robert Brelsford at

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