Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said on Monday that the newly found massive oil field in the country was discovered with the use of most advanced technologies, adding that the oil field is comprised of an old layer with 31.3 billion barrels of crude and a new one with 22 billion barrels.
“This is one of the most giant oil fields ever discovered in the history of the oil industry in Iran,” Namdar Zanganeh said this morning, offering further details on the new achievement at a press conference in Tehran.
He added that the massive reserve is made up of two layers, with the old one containing 31.3 billion barrels of crude and the new one depositing 22 billion barrels.
According to Namdar Zanganeh, very advanced and state of the art techniques and technologies have been deployed for the discovery of the giant reserve.
The press conference came one day after President Hassan Rouhani said earlier on Sunday that Iranian engineers and technicians had managed to discover an oilfield with 53 billion barrels of reserves.
Addressing a gathering of people in the central city of Yazd, Rouhani hailed the discovery as a success at a time of increased pressure and sanctions on Iran’s oil industry.
He said the oilfield is located in the Southwestern province of Khuzestan in a land stretching 2,400 square kilometers between Bostan and Omidiyeh.
The president said exploration activities for the oilfield had begun in 2016, adding that its reserves can be easily tapped in a depth of 80 meters below the earth’s surface.
Riuhani’s announcement about the oilfield means that Iran’s proven reserves of oil have increased by around a third.
The country has more than 150 billion barrels of oil, the fourth largest holder of such reserves in the world. Now, with the new discovery, Iran will become the third country in the world with the largest proven reserves of crude after Venezuela and Saudi Arabia.
Iran is also the second holder of natural gas reserves in the world after Russia. Iran’s energy reserves of crude and gas put together are biggest energy supplies in a country in the world.
The discovery of the new oilfield comes as Iran’s oil and gas industry is still under a series of harsh sanctions imposed by the US.
The sanctions were enacted last year and after Washington withdrew from an international deal on Iran’s nuclear program.
Previously, President Rouhani has said Iran cannot be shut out of global energy markets because of its vast oil and gas reserves.
Iranian officials have said the country’s energy development plans are on track, though at a slackened pace due to the sanctions.
In December 2018, Head of the National Iranian Oil Company Exploration Directorate (NIOCEXP) Saleh Hendi said 35-40 new hydrocarbon reservoirs had been discovered across Iran, which needed development. “We are now ranked first in the world for oil and gas reserves,” he said.
Hendi also said Iran was scouring 60 percent of its total area for new oil and gas reserves, including in places which were deemed until recently the least likely to have hydrocarbon-bearing formations.
In January, the country struck oil in Abadan, containing reserves of “very light and sweet”. The discovery on Minoo Island was the first ever oil find in the general area of Abadan which is home to Iran’s largest and oldest oil processing facility.
In August, the NIOCEXP announced that according to exploration studies and seismological surveys conducted in the exploratory region of North Dezful, near the fields of Mansouri, Cheshmeh Khosh and Maroun, in the regions in Western and Eastern Sousangerd, reports are indicating the discovery of an oil reservoir.