Iran output peaked in 1973 and it seems likely that this
will never be surpassed despite the country's turbulent history and its
membership of OPEC which have led to periods of restricted oil output
since the late 1970s. From 2003 up to mid 2008 it was probably producing
as much as it could although some restrictions have occurred since then.
Onshore fields are struggling to maintain production rates whilst new
investment in these and new fields is slow to be introduced. Offshore
production is increasing both as a result of foreign investment and new
liquids production from South Pars.
Iran has very large gas resources and output is expected to climb
rapidly, especially from the giant South Pars gas field, albeit with
projects repeatedly delayed. Substantial quantities of gas are being
used for injection to support oil production rates.
oil consumption has risen consistently since 1999 as the economy has
improved on the back of higher oil prices, although exports have risen
only marginally. After a drop in exports through 2009 they should pick
up again to former levels for a period before declining again after
Gas consumption has been steadily increasing since 1996, with the
country even importing some gas from Turkmenistan whilst it exports to
Turkey. Significant exports of gas may soon begin by 2014 firstly to
meet Turkish demand and later directed through planned regional
pipelines and an LNG plant accessing gas from South Pars.