Iranian petrochemical production has increased by six percent in the first 10 months of the current Iranian calendar year (March 20, 2020-January 19, 2021) compared to the same period last year, an official with the National Petrochemical Company (NPC) announced.
About three percent of this production growth is related to the increase in production of existing units, and the rest is due to the inauguration of new complexes,” said Jalal Mirhashemi, NPC's production control manager.
Emphasizing the upward trend of production in the petrochemical industry, Mirhashemi added: "I hope the production in this industry will reach about 61 million tons this year; undoubtedly, if it wasn’t for the coronavirus pandemic, we would have seen more growth in the industry's production."
He pointed to the full observance of safety and health protocols during the outbreak of coronavirus in the country’s petrochemical complexes and noted that petrochemical units have also had very good cooperation in producing sanitary products and equipment.”
The official pointed to the implementation of the overhaul program for petrochemical units in the last quarter of the current Iranian calendar year (December 21, 2020-March 20, 2021) and specified: “Considering the increasing gas consumption in the cold season, beginning of this program minimized the impact of gas shortages in the petrochemical industry.”
The petrochemical industry is playing a crucial role in Iran's non-oil economy, so that based on official data, petrochemical exports constitute the second-largest hard currency earner in Iran after crude oil. Petrochemical exports already make up nearly 33 percent of the country’s non-oil exports.
Iran has been highly developing this sector over the recent years as the development of the giant South Pars gas field (Iran shares with Qatar in the Persian Gulf) has been supplying more feedstock to the petrochemical units; the country is currently producing nearly 70 million tons of petrochemical products annually.
According to the NPC Head Behzad Mohammadi, Iran is going to become the top petrochemical producer in the region after the realization of the industry’s third leap in the Iranian calendar year 1404 (starts on March 21, 2025).