Iran says discovers new oil reserves in SW

Iran said on Tuesday that new oil reserves have been discovered in the southwest of the country, semi-official Tasnim News Agency reported.

The announcement was

made by Mehdi Fakour, director for exploration of the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), at a press conference, where he added that further details will be given by Oil Minister Javad Owji in the near future.

Meanwhile, Iranian experts have also been doing research on an offshore exploratory block in the southern waters, which contains an estimated 30 trillion cubic feet (850 billion cubic meters) of gas, he noted.

"For the first time, Iran has manufactured a light airplane for aerial magnetometry that can be used to identify hydrocarbon reserves at a depth of up to 7,000 meters underground," said Fakour.

The aircraft will survey one-tenth of Iran's entire area to collect data, according to the NIOC official.

Iran sits on the world's fourth largest oil reserves, just behind Venezuela, Saudi Arabia and Canada, and one of the largest proven gas reserves of close to 34 trillion cubic meters.