Iranian state refiner NIORDC has announced the start-up of the third of the originally planned three 120,000 b/d condensate splitters at the Persian Gulf Star (PGS) plant near the port of Bandar Abbas. The plant should enable Iran to halt gasoline imports in the absence of problems at other refineries. All three units of PGS comprise a condensate splitter and integrated naphtha reformer, enabling each to produce up to 77,000 b/d of reformate, a key gasoline component. Iran’s gasoline imports averaged 55,000 b/d in January-July 2018, after which Tehran has submitted no further data to the Jodi database. NIORDC says preliminary construction work has begun on an identical fourth PGS unit, but the resumption of international sanctions in November means that Iran – as was largely the case with the first three units – will have to rely on its own resources and financing to build the plant (MEES, 14 September 2018).