TEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) -Several methanol cargoes from Marjan Petrochemical Company which Iran inaugurated in Asaluyeh last Tuesday are being arranged for shipment to India in late September, a Tuesday report said.
President Hassan Rouhani traveled to Iran’s energy hub in the Persian Gulf last week to open Marjan Methanol’s 1.65 million metric ton per day (mt/y) unit along with two other petrochemical facilities.
The methanol unit commenced operations in mid-August and is currently operating at around 50-60% of capacity, Platts quoted sources at the company as saying.
The shipments come as the US is trying to stop Iran’s petrochemical, steel and copper exports, and to disrupt its ports and shipping services.
The US has special interest in trying to curb Iran’s methanol exports. Washington is due to more than triple its capacities from 2015 to 7.5 million mt/y by end of 2018, shifting from importer to exporter, with Europe and Asia within its sights.
Iran is a major methanol producer. According to digital media company GlobalData, the country has the highest planned methanol capacity additions globally.
It is expected to add 30 million metric tons per year to its capacity from 2018 to 2022, accounting for 54 percent of the total global planned methanol capacity additions.
Two other methanol plants, Bushehr and Kaveh, are in final construction phase and will be launched before the current Iranian year ends on March 20.
With its major methanol-to-olefins capacities, China is the biggest importer of Iranian methanol but India is also a potential target market.
Beijing, Iran’s biggest oil client, has pledged to keep imports steady despite US sanctions while India has said it will not fully cut purchases from Tehran.
India’s state-run Bharat Petroleum Corp (BPCL) said on Tuesday it will lift 1 million barrels of Iranian oil this month.
Reuters, however, quoted a source privy to the company plans as saying that the refiner will skip purchase of Iranian oil in October due to turnaround at its plants.
BPCL shut down its fire-hit hydrocracker unit at Mumbai refinery last month and reportedly plans to keep it closed for at least another two months.