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Iran Launches New Pipeline to Reroute Oil Exports

Iran launched three oil and petrochemical projects on Thursday, including the new 1000-kilometer-long Goreh-Jaskoil pipeline in the south of Iran, which will provide the country with an alternative route for crude oil exports that are currently transferred through the Strait of Hormuz.

Along with the Goreh-Jask crude oil pipeline that will expand the transport capacity in the south of the country to one million barrels a day, is a hexane production unit for the Imam Khomeini Refinery in central Iran, and the Miandoab petrochemical complex, which will bring 140,000 tons of growth in petrochemical products to the northwest of Iran.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, during the inauguration ceremony of the Goreh-Jask pipeline via videoconference, hailed the project as strategic in offering many countries in the region an alternative oil export route other than that through the Strait of Hormuz should it face danger and need to close passage.

"Iran’s oil exports will not be stopped even if international maritime passage closes one day,” he said.

Iran has spent $1.8 billion on the project, which will bring oil from the Goreh oilfield in Bushehr to the port of Jask on Iran's coast along the Gulf of Oman, making it strategically important as the country’s second-largest crude oil export terminal.

-US Sanctions

Rouhani asserted that US sanctions on Iran would not halt the country’s plans for progress, as he said the strategically important region of Jask "will be turned into an important oil export station in the future.”

"Although sanctions created problems, they also created opportunities for self-sufficiency,” he said.

In a cabinet meeting on Wednesday, Rouhani said his country is ready for talks with the US but on condition that the US abides by United Nations regulations and reinstates its obligations to the 2015 nuclear deal, known as the JCPOA.

In May 2018, US President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from the landmark 2015 nuclear deal that world powers struck with Tehran to curb its nuclear program in exchange for billions of dollars in relief from economic sanctions.

Trump has since embarked on a campaign to scuttle the agreement, including the re-imposition of sanctions on Iranian crude oil that were lifted as part of the agreement.

Data from the International Energy Agency showed that Iran's proven oil reserves were almost 157 billion barrels in 2018 to rank fourth in the world and second globally for natural gas.

Iran's exports of petroleum products averaged 507,000 barrels per day (bpd) in 2017, falling from 587,000 bpd in 2016.

Iran, which exported 1.8 million barrels of crude oil daily in 2018, was able to export only 573,261 barrels in 2019 due to the US withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, also known as Iran Nuclear Agreement.

(Anadolu Agency, 25 June, 2020)

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