Iran has discovered a natural-gas field in the Caspian Sea, the Ministry of Petroleum’s news website Shana reported, citing Oil Minister Rostam Qasemi.
The field, in waters 700 meters (2,300 feet) deep, lies wholly within Iranian territory, Qasemi said, without specifying the location or estimating the amount of gas contained there, according to Shana. Iran has 11 trillion cubic meters of proven gas reserves in the Caspian Sea, excluding this latest discovery, the minister said.
Iran holds the world’s second-largest gas reserves, with 29.6 trillion cubic meters, according to the BP Statistical Review of World Energy in June. Russia has the biggest reserves of the fuel, BP data show.
Iran’s government is struggling to attract foreign investment to help develop its gas and oil resources amid international economic sanctions. The U.S., United Nations and European Union have imposed sanctions to try to deter Iran from developing technology for nuclear weapons. The government says it want nuclear power for civilian purposes.