Oil production at Iran's West Karoun nearly doubled in the past year: Zanganeh

Iran's Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh talks to journalists at the beginning of an OPEC meeting in Vienna, Austria, November 30, 2017. REUTERS/Heinz-Peter Bader

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Oil production from the West Karoun oilfields in southwest Iran nearly doubled in the past year, oil minister Bijan Zanganeh said in an interview broadcast live on state TV Saturday.

Oil production for the West Karoun oilfields for the Iranian month of Dey, which runs from late December until late January, was 161,000 bpd last year.

The West Karoun oilfields produced 305,000 bpd for the same time period this year, Zanganeh said.

Also, OPEC members are likely to stick to production limits through the end of 2018, Zanganeh said. OPEC and non-OPEC producers led by Russia agreed last November to extend oil output cuts until the end of 2018.

Separately, Zanganeh said in the state TV interview that Iran’s daily gas production at South Pars, the world’s largest gas field, has increased by 83 million cubic meters in the past year.

The daily gas production for the Iranian month of Dey was approximately 470 million cubic meters at South Pars last year. The daily gas production for the same time period this year was 553 million cubic meters, Zanganeh said in the interview.

France’s Total signed a deal with Tehran last July to develop phase 11 of South Pars marking the first major Western energy investment in the Islamic Republic since the lifting of sanctions against it.

Total will be the operator with a 50.1 percent stake, alongside Chinese state-owned oil and gas company CNPC with 30 percent, and National Iranian Oil Co subsidiary Petropars with 19.9 percent.

Reporting by Babak Dehghanpisheh, editingby Louise Heavens