INTRODUCTION

 

Sobhan Institute for Energy Studies (SIES) was founded in DATE by a group of experienced energy and petroleum-sectors specialists and experts, focused initially and primarily on Iran and serving both clients from this, our domestic market, and international clients – not least those seeking efficacious Iranian market entry.
The impressive scientific, engineering, analytical, and academic credentials (awards, track records, testimonials and qualifications) of SIES’s research fellows span: the fields of management, economy, law and engineering; and the entirety of the extractive industries value chain.

Our mission is to deliver an exemplary level of service to clients seeking accurate, evidence-based, analysis, and informed recommendations regarding, energy markets that will enable them to optimize their own strategies and decision-making processes

 

How We Do It

 

Sobhan Institute for Energy Studies (SIES) creates value for our clients through the practical application of our critical understanding of upstream, midstream and downstream markets in Iran and globally. Our number one core competency is delivering high impact consulting with regards to Iran’s petroleum sector, including petroleum (oil and gas), petrochemicals, and downstream electricity.
We excel in the action-orientated study of the petroleum sector of our home market, Iran. Unlike our competitors, we offer informed analysis at the level of the individual oil and gas field. As a practical aid to investment decision-making, this level of analysis is unrivalled. Uniquely, our service is inclusive of locally undertaken research to test, validate the input data used in our modeling, offering a far greater level of certainty to our resulting conclusions and recommendations.

 

Nimble and Effective

 

The energy sector in general, and petroleum specifically, is both environmentally sensitive and also requires sympathetic and sensitive treatment with respect to national authorities. SIES has the dexterity to effectively navigate these risks, and to offer practical guidance thereby. Our shared commitment to the public sector, not least with the Islamic Republic of Iran, for sustainable, inclusive and enhanced-scale petroleum sector economic development strongly positions SIES as a positive and constructive partner for development and for government.

TRACK RECORD

 

The broad range of SIES’s projects is illustrated by the below listing, showing examples of our work

  • Financial feasibility study plan for the Iranian Offshore Engineering and Construction Company, including with respect to how subsidies reform would impact this company.
  • Detailed maintenance strategy, including outsourced procurement, provided for Akam Adack Company (maritime sector).
  • Private sector – private sector arbitration in Iran with regards to petroleum sector disputes.
  • Development of octoral research programme on oil and gas contract management, including all training materials, and both reading guides and lists.
  • Taxonomy of petroleum contracts, and supporting evidence base of collated contracts, produced for an Iranian university to support their doctoral research programme.
  • In-depth research on the impact of international sanctions against Iran, taking a case study approach, e.g. through an analysis of the impact of these sanctions on the Iranian Offshore Engineering and Construction Company.
  • In-depth research on common issues experienced in the transboundary context of petroleum unitization / joint operations.
  • Foreign exchange rate fluctuations’ risk management research in the context of foreign direct investment in Iran’s petroleum sector, conducted for a large upstream petroleum company.
  • Research into different options for the restructuring of the Iranian Ministry of Oil.
  • Research in to the investment potential, risk analysis and expected levels of total shareholder return of different Middle East petroleum projects, conducted for potential Iranian investors.
  • Evaluation of Iran’s Marine Industries Protection Act.
  • Iranian oil and gas field detailed economic and technical analysis (conducted for specific fields), including on-site validation of data.
  • Investigation of the legal, financial and technical hurdles relating to the construction of the Setare-ye-Khalij Fars Refinery, which will become Iran’s largest refinery when complete.
  • Contract research project undertaken: de-risking and hedging of risks in the Iranian petroleum sector: an evaluation of different available tools and tactics.
  • Research into the extraction of transboundary oil and gas field reserves.
  • Evaluating the effects of subsidies reform on the Iranian Offshore Engineering and Construction Company’s activities
  • The provision of dispute resolution services to upstream petroleum companies operating in Iran
  • Stakeholder engagement of affected communities and industry participants with respect to proposed pipeline development projects in Iran.
  • Advised the instigators of the Iranian Petroleum Exchange Market, established on behalf of the IR of Iran, with respect to both the establishment of that Market and with respect to the proper use of risk hedging tools such as options and futures.

 

SELECTED PROJECTS IN MORE DETAIL

 

  1. Iranian oil and gas field economic and logistical analysis, including with respect to, inter alia: petroleum reserves; production profiling; reduced-pace petroleum extraction from mature fields undertaken in order to maximum efficient recovery (conservatory principle); and the impact of technology – not least on enhanced oil recovery.-> Iran’s larger oil fields are at various stages of maturity. In some cases, increasing levels of production are exhibited month-on-month, and ahead of an expected (profiled) peak
    production plateau. In other cases, experienced reductions in oil field pressure have already led to the application of enhanced oil field technology through associated gas reinjection to boost oil production. This analysis is closely tied to SIES’s analysis of the impact of Adoption Day and the subsequent lifting of most international sanctions on Iran, see below.
  2. Studies of both the medium and long-term impacts of international sanctions against Iran on its petroleum sector, and both the positive and negative likely impacts on future investment attractiveness.
    -> Given the undoubted vast levels of Iran’s oil resources that remain untapped, there is an opportunity for transformative increases in production through more efficacious application of oil field technology capable of rendering anachronistic previous estimates of recoverable reserves and production profiles (see 1. above) that were constrained by the negative impacts of international sanctions on the legal and logistical ability of Iran to import of the necessary technology.
  3. Building upon the Iranian Government’s 2020 Energy Roadmap, which is a comprehensive and strategic document of the IR of Iran, SIES developed a series of Oil and Gas Strategies for the use of public sector policy-makers that offer evidence-based actionable plans for implementation.
  4. Evaluating the impacts of subsidies / energy price liberalization reform on non-oil exports: the main goal of our Iranian case study on this topic is to review the impact of the price liberalization of energy deliveries on non-oil exports.
  5. Research into the extraction of transnational oil and gas field reserves. Our research focuses on the best strategies in developing upstream transboundary oil fields, with regards to both unitization strategies and joint operating agreements, in the context of Iran’s legal and fiscal regime, and also the respective regimes of its neighbors.
  6. Provision of practical advice to petroleum sector clients, including the Iranian Offshore Engineering and Construction Company, regarding efficacious and optimized strategies for raising new capital.

Our track record of delivery provides the solid foundations of our consultancy offer.

SIES Testimonials
SIES is justly proud of the high regard that our clients hold us in, and would be pleased to share with any interested parties client testimonials regarding our past work.

HOW WE CAN HELP – CAPABILITY STATEMENT

 

Our track record of delivery provides the solid foundations of our consultancy offer. These services include consultancy support to:
a. Upstream petroleum companies seeking to develop/ adopt legal regime compliant and robust contracts with suppliers and/ or customers in Iran.

b. Supply chain companies and potential market entrants within the upstream, including feasibility studies. For example, past research has included the completion of a feasibility study considering the establishment of an engineering inspection company serving Iran’s domestic petroleum exploration and development market, and globally, outwith Iran.

c. All petroleum market participants with respect to:

i. Evidence-based advice and analysis, including the provision of locally-validated data input rather than solely relying on official, publically available, data sources.

ii. Financing options, including financial ring-fencing, the use of special purpose entities (e.g. in “project-financing” scenarios), risk finance, equity finance and state participation.

iii. Logistical options regarding access to offshore and onshore rafts, floating platforms and rigs, and tankers.

iv. Marketing, purchase, sales, transaction and export contracts across the full gamut of both refined and unrefined petroleum products, i.e. inclusive of crude oil, natural gas, refined oil products and petrochemical products.

v. Petroleum engineering, construction, purchase and supply of equipment and technology, and both their installation and optimized implementation.

d. Primarily to industry participants:

i. Research-led news bulletin services on specific energy sector topics (or for the sector as a whole), in particular those relating to Iran and the wider MENA region.

ii. Model contracts for the upstream petroleum sector including investment contracts, contracts for purchase of oilfield services, buy-back, and farm-in/ farm-out equity stake participation.

iii. Contracting agreements for the construction of refinery facilities downstream and with respect to the midstream, e.g. pipelines, and both land and marine structures.

iv. Labor law and contracting, including local content considerations (if applicable).

v. Contract implementation (adherence), management and dispute settlement (both: government – private sector; and private sector – private sector), including through the full range of arbitration and investor-state dispute settlement options.

e. Both the public sector (public policy makers) and private sector (industry participants), with respect to:

i. Transboundary natural gas pipelines options and plans, especially those planned/ under construction in the Central Asian region.

ii. Petrochemicals industry of Iran, including international benchmarking, competitiveness analysis, a gap analysis of the sector, and proposed remedial strategies for improvement.

iii. In combination, “soft law” (i.e. rules and regulations) and “hard law” (i.e. legal requirements) applicable to the energy sectors of different, case study, countries globally, directed at both: providing evidence-based, practical recommendations for the future evolution of Iran’s regulatory regime; and providing practical advice and guidance to upstream industry participants in the energy sectors of the different nations considered.

iv. Policy options and practical, logistical considerations relating to the generation of electricity from natural gas – practical, comparative downstream analysis informed by an understanding of practice (public policy and both private and public sector-led extraction) across the MENA region, in particular Iran.

v. Unitization and Joint Operating Agreement options relating to transboundary reserves (see specific item listed in track record above). SIEIS’s research offer here is again grounded in our Iranian experience and market knowledge.

vi. Contract research: conducting interdisciplinary studies in areas of oil, gas and energy or in collaboration with other researchers who are active in areas of oil and energy.

vii. Education and Training: given the depth and breadth of the topics, all SIES educational programs have a minimum duration of at least five days. SIEIS is available to undertake contract research seminars, symposiums, and taught
postgraduate level education energy sector programs. It encompasses the design, planning, and management of specialized educational programs tailored to the specific requirements of our clients. This offer includes both short-term intensive, and longer-duration flexible delivery interdisciplinary courses devised for managers, and experts active in the petroleum sector.
-> The SIES Education and Training offer encompasses, inter alia: petroleum operations planning – commercial; petroleum sector development – State enablement and strategic planning; international higher education collaborations; global roster of lecturers and guest speakers; planning and collaborating with universities and domestic scientific institutions in order to provide and write educational sources in energy area; mentoring support for postgraduate and doctoral students researching the energy sector in institutions globally; corporate training tailored for the specific needs of individual companies; and production of educational materials on the energy sector for use in schools and by children in their homes.