Iran is poised to strike a new oil gusher in an offshore field which the country shares with the UAE in the Persian Gulf, an official says.
New discovery drillings in the Salman field have led Iranian prospectors to a new hydrocarbon-bearing formation which most probably contains oil reserves, an official with the Iranian Offshore Oil Company (IOOC), Kambiz Moradi, said.
The field lies within the Lavan zone which also contains such reservoirs as Reshadat, Belal and Resalat.
Salman’s most important oil layer is Sormeh which has been in production for about 50 years. Moradi said Sormeh has been producing 12,000 barrels per day of additional oil since March 2015 after the drilling of four new wells.
Iran has been spudding new wells at Salman to raise output to 50,000 bpd, according to media reports.
The official did not give figures on estimated reserves or production rates for the new field, but said initial surveys showed it is smaller than other Salman oil layers.
Salman has been in service since 1968 with about 1.6 billion barrels of recoverable reserves. It is currently estimated to hold more than 500 million barrels of oil.
The platforms on the Salman oilfield are some of the biggest in the Persian Gulf with a capacity to produce 220,000 bpd of oil and associated products. They also include gas recovery facilities which are being prepared for production.
The field is expected to yield 500 million cubic feet of gas per day on top of 6,000 barrels of condensates when production begins.
Iran’s oil recovery from Salman comes from 44 wells. A 22-inch pipe takes the offshore oil to the Lavan island 144 km off for processing or exports.
About 70% of the field belongs to Iran. The United Arab Emirates which calls it Abu al-Khosh on its side in Abu Dhabi has recovered 400 million barrels so far.