In Shell’s and Repsol’s absence, the upstream phases from the Persian LNG venture have been awarded to the Khatam ol-Osea consortium, consisting of notorious Revolutionary Guard affiliate Khatam al-Anbiya, OIEC, Sadra, ISOICO, IDRO, and NIDC, according to Mehr (see Iran: 4 June 2010: Revolutionary Guard Affiliates Advance Positions at Iran’s South Pars Gas Field). The upstream phases contract is, according to Iranian media, now valued at US$5 billion. This sounds quite low given earlier Shell and Repsol calculations, but this number only pertains to the development of the offshore gas production capacity, an integrated onshore processing capability, and a connecting subsea pipeline.
The award of the project to Iranian companies is likely to result, finally, in progress on production capacity development, given that the financing of the project can be solved. The result is however likely to fall short of what the original plans have called for, as well as suffering further delays, given the previous track record of Iranian-developed South Pars phases—which have involved one or several of the partners in this latest consortium. Iranian companies have constantly, due to their technological and financial shortcomings and the heavy brain-drain Iran has suffered over the past decades, missed the production capacity and project schedule targets, while the phases developed by foreign players have been able to bring production capacities onstream that overshoot initial plans by sometimes as much as 30%.
Source: / ihs /