Iran, the world's second largest oil producer, is also a major consumer of petrol (gasoline) and other oil products with 174 million liters a day, an official of the National Iranian oil products distribution company, Ali Aghababai, said Wednesday.
In November, he said Tehran had substantially increased its petrol imports to meet rising national demand, Iran's refineries being unable to boost their output.
Quoted by the official IRNA agency, Aghababai said refined oil imports would soar to a record 1.2 billion liters for the Iranian year 1379 (March 2000 to March 2001) compared with 700 million for the same period last year.
For several years, Iranian authorities have asked the population to reduce its consumption of oil products.
But according to Aghababai, this consumption boost is caused by low prices.
In Iran, where energy products are subsidized, a liter of petrol costs four cents, ten percent of the average US price and four percent of the price in Britain.—AFP.
©--Agence France Presse.
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )