Iran's Reshadat oil field

Iran market great without American rivals: Europe firm

SHANA – A senior executive with an Austrian engineering company says they would welcome an Iranian oil and gas industry market without American rivals.

Speaking to Shana on the sidelines of the 1st Austrian Technology Transfer Symposium for Enhanced Oil Recovery by Using Treated Water here in Tehran, the Managing Partner of SONNEK Engineering Company DL Werner Wieseneder talked about the presence of his company in Iran and its cooperation plans with local partners.

“Well,… this is not my first time in an Iran,” he said, adding: “Regarding the business climate, I think there is a lot of interest but we still see the same delay in development projects because their financing and banking issues.”

So for SONNEK, “it’s only a matter of time; it’s not the question if we will come, but it’s a question of when we will come here.”

There are many old oilfields and they need state-of-the-art technologies for sustainable oil production, he added.

Asked about the company’s future plans to work with Iranian partners, Wieseneder said: “I am confident that the relations between Iranian and Austrian companies are very good for now.”

How do you see the opportunity for being in this market for cooperation with Iranian companies and the field of enhanced oil recovery (EOR) and improved oil recovery (IOR), asked Shana.

“I think that would be very good because first of all we have the right technology for what they need because we faced the same situation years ago in the European countries so this is where the technology is coming from. Secondly, today, in the oil world, there are typically either Europeans or Americans that drive the industry forward. I don’t see the Americans driving the business here,” he said.

Asked if the anti-Iran stances of the White House would affect operations by European companies in Iran, he said: “Actually there are two sides to look at this question; the one side is that it gives us more opportunity because the Americans are not here and they’re not allowed to be here; so their technology is not going to be here. …So this gives us a better opportunity. There is always a competition between European and American companies in oil and gas industries.”

The other thing, he said, is of course that the business is not really powered by the sanctions. “So, we have found our way how to do the business and how to get the bank connection to money transfer from Iran. So this is basically is solved. So I’m really looking forward to seeing different results in the matter of the next couple of months and it would look quicker if we didn’t have the sanctions.”

The SONNEC executive also said that they have just opened a small office in Tehran but “it’s a legal entity because we have to be here and I would say that the local clients are expecting that we are not only from abroad bringing in technologies and then leave. We have opened the office to show them that we are here to stay and work.”

As a pump specialist, SONNEK sells pumps and pump systems that are either purchased ready for operation by international contract partners (pump manufacturers) or that are finished at SONNEK to form complete systems.

In many cases, SONNEK also undertakes assembly, service and repair with its own technicians. The customer base mainly comprises industrial customers of all divisions with a focus on the oil, chemical, metal, construction, pharmaceutical and food industries as well as the entire energy sector such as hydropower, mineral and biogenic fuels.

SONNEK is Austria’s largest manufacturer-independent pump specialist today.