Upon completion of 40 projects (currently underway in different regions) gas transmission capacity and distribution network will improve, helping network stability, especially in the winters when consumption rises,” ISNA quoted Hassan Montazer-Torbati as saying.
Expanding the gas network in both urban and rural areas is a priority of the NIGC.
Ongoing projects include laying over 830 kilometers of high-pressure gas pipelines to expand the Iran Gas Trunkline (IGAT), setting up 25 turbo compressor stations, and construction of 12 pressure boosting facilities.
IGAT comprises nine large diameter pipelines supplying gas from refineries in the south (Khuzestan and Bushehr provinces) across the country.
The ventures will help augment gas grid stability in the northwest, north and northeast.
A total of 3,000 rural areas were connected to the gas grid in the last fiscal year and the NIGC is working to connect another 3,000 villages to the network this year.
The move is in line with the government's goal of linking all urban areas and 90% of the suburban population to the gas network by 2022.
Over 82% of the rural population and 97% of the urban population are connected to the national grid.
According to NIGC data, more than 22 million households in 1,133 cities, 24,260 towns and 27,000 villages are linked to the rapidly expanding gas grid.
Close to 240 billion cubic meters of natural gas was supplied via the grid in the last fiscal. The total stretch of gas pipelines was 36,000 km in 2016 and expanded by 1,000 km a year later.
By 2025, the length of Iran’s gas pipelines should increase by 9,000 km and annual gas supply capacity is projected to reach 400 bcm.
Daily gas production capacity is 840 million cubic meters. Output from South Pars accounts for over two-thirds -- 630 mcm per day -- of the total domestic demand.
NIGC plans call for daily production from South Pars to increase by 60 mcm by next March.
South Pars is the world’s largest gas field shared between Iran and Qatar. Iran is developing the mega project in 24 phases.
It holds an estimated 40 trillion cubic meters of natural gas, or roughly 8% of the world’s reserves and approximately 18 billion barrels of condensates.