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Iran, Venezuela, Syria Sign MoU on Syrian Oil Refinery.

Behaving like a super-power is costing Iran billions of dollars outside the national economy. Yet almost 30% of Iran's population of nearly 70m are below the poverty line. Still the governments of Iran, Venezuela and Syria have formed a consortium to have an oil refinery built in Syria. Officials of the three countries on Oct. 31 signed a memorandum of understanding to implement the project.

Iran's Deputy Oil Minister in charge of oil refining and distribution, Mohammad-Reza Nematzadeh, Syria's Deputy Oil Minister Hassan Zeinab, and Venezuela's Director General of Refinery Affairs Roberto Del Gado were present at the ceremony. According to estimates, funds for implementation of the project are about US$1.5 billion, and relevant studies will determine each party's share in investment. At this time, there are two possible locations for construction of the oil refinery near Damascus, but one of them will be chosen for implementation of the project.

Syrian Oil Minister Sufian ALlaw and Iranian Charge d'Affaires in Syria Ghazanfar Roknabadi also took part in the ceremony of signing the MoU. The three countries' presidents raised the plan of the joint venture to construct a refinery with the capacity of 140,000 b/d of crude oil. Iran, Syria and Venezuela's common political and economic stances are based on combating US expansionism to promote a multi-polar world order which can enjoy development, freedom and sovereignty. Venezuela's populist President Hugo Chavez paid a visit to Syria in September during which he praised Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadi-Nejad's stance against US pressures. He stipulated in a news conference that Venezuela and Syria would also follow up Iran's stance to confront US pressure.
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Publication:APS Review Downstream Trends
Date:Nov 6, 2006
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