Fri Jan 27, 2017 12:18PM
An aerial view of a gas production platform in Iran's South Pars energy zone.  (Photo by Shana)
An aerial view of a gas production platform in Iran's South Pars energy zone. (Photo by Shana)

Iran says it has started exporting condensate – a form of ultra light oil - from two newly launched phases of its giant South Pars gas field to Japan. 

Pirouz Mousavi, the managing director of the National Iranian Oil Terminals Company (NIOTC), was quoted by the media as saying that the consignment sent to Japan contained 160,000 barrels of condensate from South Pars Phases 20 and 21.

Mousavi added that a 300-ton Japanese vessel had taken the consignment from Phases 20 and 21 as well as another from Phases 2, 3, 4 and 5. 

He did not specify how much had been loaded from other phases but it could stand at several hundreds of thousands of barrels. 

Mousavi further added that the vessel – named Fujikawa – was also to load 650,000 barrels of crude oil from Iran’s Forouzan oil field before leaving for Japan.

Iran announced in December that it was already expanding the market for its condensate – which can be used to make both fuel and plastic.

Masoud Hassani, the managing director of South Pars Gas Complex, told the domestic media at the time that the country had sent its first cargo of one million barrels of condensate to Europe. 

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In September, indications grew that condensate had already found a special position in Iran’s exports.

Officials were quoted by media at the time as saying that exports of the ultra-light oil over a period of five months starting 21 March 2016 stood at above 7 million tons, showing an increase of 76 percent compared to the same period last year.

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South Korea is a key importer of Iran’s condensate.  Reuters in June reported that the country’s imports of condensate from Iran could reach the record level of 6 million barrels - or 200,000 barrels a day - over the month.

Reuters said it had used figures provided by traders to make the estimate given that South Korea does not provide separate data on imports of condensate.

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