mardi, août 16, 2005

Vaste programme d’investissement estimé à 55 Mds USD à l’horizon 2015

Les réserves prouvées de l’Iran ont été réévaluées fin 2003 par le Ministère du Pétrole à 125,8 Mds de barils (contre 90 Mds précédemment), soit plus de 10% du total des réserves prouvées, les deuxièmes au monde après l’Arabie Saoudite. L’Iran a exporté en 2004 environ 2,5 Mb/j de pétrole à destination principalement du Japon, de la Chine, de la Corée du Sud, de Taiwan et de l’Europe. La consommation intérieure, estimée en 2004 à 1,5 M b/j, est en forte progression tirée par la démographie et la croissance économique.

Un des objectifs prioritaires de l’Iran est de maintenir sa part de marché au sein de l’OPEP, actuellement de 14 %. A cette fin, eu égard aux anticipations de
croissance de la demande mondiale, l’Iran prévoit d’augmenter sa capacité de
production à 5,4 b/j en 2010 et 8Mb/j en 2020. Inscrit au 4ème plan
quinquennal (2005/2010), cet objectif ambitieux vise un accroissement annuel,
net du taux de perte, de l’ordre de 200 000 b/j. Il impose le financement de très
importants investissements (estimés par le Ministère du Pétrole à 55 Md USD à
l’horizon 2015) pour maintenir les installations existantes et développer de
nouvelles capacités de production.

Concernant l’exploration, deux contrats de buy back a été signé ce mois de juin sur les 16 blocs mis en concurrence onshore (Saveh attribué au Thaïlandais PTTEP et Koudasht attribué au chinois CNPC). Les blocs offshore de Fars, Forouz, Iranmehr et Tousan ont été attribués notamment à Repsol et Petrobras.

En termes de développement, des projets importants sont en cours , objets de mémoires d’ententes (MOU) ou à l’étude avec principalement les champs de Azadegan par le japonais Inpex (150.000 b/j en phase 1 puis 260.000 b/j en phase 2), Azadegan nord (90 à 100.000 b/j), Yadavaran (300 à 400.000 b/j – MOU signé avec Sinopec), Jofeyr par PetroIran en association avec Schlumberger (30.000 b/j) ou South Pars Oil layer (5.000 b/j).

lundi, août 15, 2005

Iran is moving Eastward, and ignoring the West altogether

Iran looks to China for backing in nuclear dispute

By Salar Ghahramani

Iran's decision to resume its uranium conversion activities signals a major shift in
the country's foreign policy under the newly-inaugurated conservative president,
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Prior to Ahmadinejad and during the reign of the more moderate president Mohammad
Khatami, Iran accepted a temporary freeze on most of its nuclear programme. It agreed
to multilateral negotiations with France, Germany, and Britain and also allowed the
International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to inspect its nuclear facilities on a
regular basis.

But Iran's internal dynamics have drastically changed in the past few weeks.

With Ahmadinejad in office, the conservatives now run every major decision-making
body in Iran. After eight years of having to share power with moderates,
conservatives can now pursue Iran's nuclear programme which, they insist, is for
peaceful means only.

Iran's policy-makers have calculated that they can move forward with the country's
nuclear programme without any serious repercussions. Instead of worrying about what
the West might do to hold back the nuclear programme, Iranians are looking east,
where they see a rising giant and a close ally in China.

The alliance is mutually beneficial: Iran supplies the energy-hungry China with oil
and key industrial minerals essential to China's rapidly expanding economy. In
return, China provides Iran with military and civilian technology.

The business dealings are fuelled and politicized by both countries' dislike of the
United States.

For China, Iran's vast oil and gas reserves are a reliable and constant source of
energy, especially because the market's most powerful players – Exxon Mobil,
Chevron-Texaco and other American companies - are barred from drilling in Iran due to
the existing U.S. sanctions.

In the past 15 months, China has signed a number of energy contracts with Iran,
including a 25-year agreement valued at more than $100 billion over the next decade.
That deal gives Chinese companies a 51% interest in the vast Yadavaran oilfield,
Iran's biggest onshore field.

Under the agreement's additional terms, Chinese engineers and excavation specialists
will be helping Iran develop its South Pars fields in the Persian Gulf, the largest
natural-gas reserve on the planet.

Iran shares the South Pars fields with its small Persian Gulf neighbor, Qatar.

Soon after this agreement was signed, Li Zhaoxing, the Chinese foreign minister, paid
a visit to Iran, saying that China saw “no reason'‘ to refer Iran's nuclear programme
to the United Nations. Such comments from a Chinese official are good news for Iran,
because China sits on the United Nations' Security Council, the only body that can
impose economic sanctions on member states.

As a permanent member, China can veto any resolution that comes before the Council.

It is expected that China would veto any resolution aimed at Iran's nuclear

Given the Sino-Iranian relationship, the U.S. and the EU are reluctant to see Iran's
case go before the Security Council.

They would rather see continued negotiations and hope the impasse will end.

Due to the precariousness of the situation, the IAEA's board of governors' most
recent resolution, adopted by consensus on August 11, only expresses “serious
concern'‘ over Iran's resumed activities in Isfahan.

It urges Iran to re-suspend its enrichment related activities on a “voluntary,
non-legally binding basis'‘.

The resolution contains no mention of a Security Council referral, although it asks
Iran to suspend its renewed uranium conversion activities by September 3. If Iran
does not comply with the request by September, the IAEA will probably revisit the
case and come up with another resolution, which will, most likely, also be void of a
referral to the Security Council.

This is not just because of the China factor, but also because IAEA board members,
which represent 13 of the 35 board seats, are in the nonaligned movement (Nam), which
aims to safeguard the nuclear interests of developing countries. Nam members include
nuclear states such as Brazil, Argentina, Pakistan and South Africa, who fear that a
resolution against Iran could later comeback to haunt their own nuclear programmes.

As a result, the current circumstances leave the U.S. and the EU with limited options
on how to deal with Iran. Ultimately, EU members might create a sanctions regime of
their own, although European countries have historically been reluctant to act
unilaterally and without the blessing of the Security Council in such cases.

As for the U.S., surgical military strikes against Iran's nuclear facilities are a

However, they are unlikely because of the U.S. involvement in Iraq, the U.S.
military's diminished resources, and President Bush's low approval ratings,
particularly in regard to his handling of the war in Iraq.

Until an agreement is reached, through diplomacy or by force, the world will be
watching Iranian technicians roll out barrels of yellowcake.

* Salar Ghahramani is a lecturer in political science at Pennsylvania State

samedi, août 06, 2005

L'UE propose à l'Iran de devenir une voie de transit énergétique


L'Union européenne propose à l'Iran d'acheminer via son territoire l'essentiel de ses importations d'hydrocarbures en provenance d'Asie centrale, déclare un responsable iranien proche des négociations sur le nucléaire iranien.

Cette proposition fait partie des mesures présentées par l'UE pour inciter l'Iran à renoncer à ses activités nucléaires.

"Parmi ces propositions, ils soutiennent l'idée de faire de l'Iran la voie principale d'acheminement énergétique d'Asie centrale vers l'Europe", a déclaré ce responsable.

India may invest in gas pipeline project from Iran

New Delhi, Aug 5, IRNA- The prospects of Iran-India gas pipeline project looked particularly bright when Iran and Pakistan - through which the pipeline will be constructed to India - signed a basic agreement over the project last month.

Iran's Deputy Petroleum Minister Hadi Nejad-Hosseinian arrived in New Delhi on Wednesday for talks with Indian officials on how to push the project further toward reality. Nevertheless, the announcement in local media on Friday that India may invest in the project brought even more good news for the supporters of the "Peace Pipeline" scheme.

The media have also reported that the latest Indian position is a departure from its earlier stance that it would only take delivery of gas on the Indo-Pakistan border.

The Hindu has quoted unnamed Indian Petroleum Ministry officials as saying that a cabinet approval will have to be sought for joining the project consortium.

The officials said after the conclusion of the two-day meeting of the Indo-Iran Joint Working Group that India's involvement in the project would also help to ensure the security of the pipeline.

India and Pakistan are expected to appoint financial consultants by the end of the month to outline the project structure.

The press have also quoted Iran's Deputy Oil Minister for International Affairs Hadi Nejad-Hosseinian as saying that the project structure should be in place by November.

This could involve the three countries laying the pipeline separately in their territory or having a consortium of Indian, Pakistani and Iranian companies along with international firms, which would build and operate the pipeline.

At the end of the meeting, a statement issued said that as soon as an agreement on the project structure was reached, the trilateral framework accord would be finalized by the year-end.

The Indian side reiterated its commitment to carry forward the project.

On the question of security of the pipeline which is the main concern of the Indian side, Hosseinian said it was a "very important" issue, which needed to be addressed in the framework agreement.

As for requirement, he said India and Pakistan sought more than the capacity of the 56-inch pipeline. It would have a capacity of only 120 million standard cubic metres of gas a day.

An Indian technical team will visit Teheran in the third week of this month to review the pre-feasibility report prepared jointly by the National Iranian Gas Export Company (NIGEC) and BHP Billiton.

vendredi, août 05, 2005

Principaux points de l'offre européenne à l'Iran pour qu'il mette fin à son programme nucléaire

PARIS (AP) -- Principaux points du «cadre pour un accord à long terme» détaillant, sous trois volets, l'offre faite par la troïka européenne à Téhéran, négociable tous les dix ans, si elle est acceptée:

- L'UE réaffirmera le «droit inaliénable de l'Iran à l'utilisation pacifique de l'énergie nucléaire», en conformité avec le TNP, le traité de non-prolifération nucléaire.
- L'Iran pourra avoir «accès aux technologies nucléaires civiles dans le cadre d'appels d'offres internationaux» et avoir un «accès continu au marché international de l'énergie nucléaire.»
- Les Européens garantiront «l'approvisionnement durable de l'Iran en combustible nucléaires pour ses centrales».
- L'Iran devra s'engager «à ne pas poursuivre ses activités de conversion et d'enrichissement destinées à tout autre but que la construction et la gestion de centrales à eau légère et des réacteurs de recherche». L'Iran devra retourner tous les déchets nucléaires à son fournisseur.
- L'Iran devra s'engager à ne pas se retirer du TNP et de maintenir toues les facilités nucléaires iraniennes sous bonne garde en toutes circonstances.
- L'Iran devra cesser la construction de son réacteur nucléaire à eau lourde à Arak, dans le centre du pays, qui a suscité de fortes inquiétudes.
- L'Iran devra accepter les inspections surprises de l'AIEA, l'Agence internationale de l'énergie atomique.

- L'UE proposera «un engagement mutuel en conformité avec la charte des Nations unies, y compris pour la résolution des conflits par des moyens pacifiques».
- L'UE propose d'assister l'Iran dans sa lutte contre le trafic de drogue.
- Les parties signataires réaffirmeront «leur engagement à l'objectif d'un Moyen-Orient libre de toute arme de destruction massive».

- L'UE se dit prête à considérer l'Iran «comme une source d'approvisionnement énergétique de long terme».
- L'UE se dit prête à apporter «un soutien politique à l'accession de l'Iran à l'OMC», l'Organisation mondiale du commerce.
- L'UE se dit prête à développer la coopération scientifique et technologique de long terme.