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Iran has revamped its oil and gas sector since sanctions were eased at the start of 2016, but greater foreign investment is required if it is to fulfill its ambitious output 4.7mn b/d 2021 crude output target.
Projects continue to be delayed and quietly downgraded. Crude output and exports have rebounded strongly post-sanctions – output rose by 32% between 4Q 2015 (2.88mn b/d) and 3Q this year (3.81mn b/d); oil revenues soared accordingly, from $27bn in 2015, to $41bn in 2016 and are on track to exceed $56bn this year. But the output gains have slowed. Foreign investment is essential for Iran to take the next step.