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Iran seeking to become Middle East gas hub: Oil minister

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)
A section of the Phase 14 of the giant South Pars gas field is seen in this picture taken on March 2, 2023. (Photo by

The oil minister says the ministry is pursuing plans to turn Iran into the Middle East’s gas hub through cooperation with Qatar, Russia and Turkmenistan.

Speaking on the sidelines of a cabinet meeting in Tehran on Wednesday, Javad Owji said that his department has made plans to make Iran a gas hub in the region given the country’s proper geographical situation and its 33 trillion cubic meters of extractable gas.

“Through cooperation with Russia, Turkmenistan and Qatar, we are trying to have a gas hub in the Asaluyeh [port] in the Persian Gulf region, with preparations being planned,” he added.

“Considering the fact that Iran’s gas network and transmission lines are unique in the region and the world, the stage is fully set for Iran to become a gas hub in view of the volume of the country’s gas reserves and infrastructure.”

Additionally, Owji noted, the Oil Ministry has put on its agenda a plan for increasing Iran’s share in energy trade with neighboring countries.

He also said that the government of President Ebrahim Raeisi is pursuing energy diplomacy, among other key policies.

Iran currently sits on the second largest gas reserves in the world. The country is also the third largest global producer of natural gas after the United States and Russia with some 1 billion cubic meters per day of output.

Owji also highlighted the Oil Ministry’s policy to use the capacity provided by offshore refineries.

“Petrochemicals cannot be sanctioned due to the need for them all over the world. One of the main jobs of the Oil Ministry is to use the capacity provided by offshore refineries in different countries. Fortunately, it happened for the first time in the Latin American region and Venezuela, where the Iranian oil is processed in refineries,” he said.

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