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Iran’s nominee for oil minister says he will push for increased gas output

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Photo shows Javad Owji, a nominee to take over Oil Ministry under a new administration in Iran.

A nominee to take over the role of Iran’s oil minister in a new administrative government led by President Ebrahim Raeisi says he’ll push for increased natural gas output beyond the current enviable record of nearly 1 billion cubic meters (3.5 billion cubic feet) per day.

A plan released by Javad Owji, nominated on Tuesday for the Oil Ministry post, showed he was keen to further boost gas production capacity to respond to a growing domestic demand in Iran.

Owji said Oil Ministry under his watch would seek to supply maximum amount of natural gas to industries and power plants to save other fuels for exports and other purposes.

Iran more than doubled its gas output during eight years of former president Hassan Rouhani. The increase became possible mainly thanks to massive expansion schemes in the country’s giant South Pars gas field that is located in the Persian Gulf.

Currently third in the world in terms of gas output, Iran aims to further increase production to both expand its export markets and to feed more gas to refineries and industries.

Several large gas fields have been discovered in recent years both on the Iranian mainland and in the Persian Gulf.  

Owji vowed in his plan for assuming the Oil Ministry job that he will also seek to cut the huge amount of natural gas burnt in Iran’s household sector.

The plan, published exclusively by the Tasnim news agency, showed that the nominated minister will seek to increase the local use of crude in the petrochemical sector so that Iran will rely less on direct crude sales, an area which is normally a first target of foreign sanctions.

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