The National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) is dispatching one of its main drilling rigs to a northern region as it prepares to finally pump crude from oilfields located near the border with Azerbaijan.
The Iranian Oil Ministry’s news service Shana said in Sunday report that Fath 54, an onshore drilling rig now stationed in the southwestern oil hub of Ahvaz, will be sent 1,310 kilometers (814 miles) away to the northern Moghan Plain where it will start drilling for oil within the next two months.
Iran has two main blocs of oilfields in the region which located in the province of Ardabil. Estimates suggest the oilfields contain over four billion barrels of mostly light crude. However, none of the oilfields are linked to reserves in neighboring Azerbaijan.
The NIOC has been carrying out exploration works in Moghan for the past 13 years. The company seeks to supply the crude extracted from the region to one of the largest refineries in Iran located in the nearby city of Tabriz.
Oil is currently supplied to Tabriz refinery from wells located in the south and via pipelines that pass through the capital Tehran.
A local NIOC contractor in Ardabil said that some 120 heavy vehicles will be involved in the transport of Fath drilling rig from Ahvaz to Moghan.
Ali Rafiei said that the operation would take 25 days to allow the drilling to start in late June.
Iran has kept executing various projects to develop its sprawling oil industry despite declining sales and revenues that have been caused by the US sanctions since they were imposed in 2018