Despite controversy surrounding international sanctions, Iran has called on foreign aid to recover a $40 million natural gas platform after it sunk to the seabed in the Persian Gulf.
Divers have been deployed to see how the 1,300-metric-ton platform can be pulled up, in the giant South Pars field, according to the state-owned Pars Oil and Gas Co. (POGC) Ltd. However, due to extreme weather conditions in the area, a recovery operation has not yet began.
The platform sunk to the bottom of the Gulf on Monday night as it was being installed by POGC and its builder, Iranian Marine Industrial Co. (Sadra), which is controlled by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards. It took 2.5 years to build.
An investigation into the cause of the sinking has been launched. No casualties have been reported in this incident.
In the face of economic sanctions imposed by the European Union and the United States, Iran is building its own oil equipment in order to achieve self-sufficiency. Iran says it currently produces about 650 million cubic meters of gas daily, including 280 million from South Pars, most of which is used for domestic consumption.