Morteza Ebrahimi Moghaddam, secretary of the Iran CNG Association, said on Monday that 20 to 30 percent of private-held CNG stations are inactive in country. In recent years, Iranian government had encouraged private sector to invest in this field in order to increase the domestic usage of CNG.
“Currency volatilities have increased the costs of CNG stations in compare to last years. In these conditions, a large number of stations cannot afford to continue serving people, because they are not able to make any money. So, stations’ owners have decided to close their CNG stations.” Ebrahimi Moghaddam said in an interview with Pars Herald.
Regarding the possible solution for resolving the mentioned issues, he went on to ask support from government and local Oil Ministry. “By increasing the commissions of stations from selling natural gas, investors will be able to earn profit. Also, the Oil Ministry must stop asking its debts from CNG stations. I think the Ministry can receive owes in several phases.”
According to Morteza Ebrahimi Moghaddam, more than 3.5 million vehicles are using CNG as their main fuel. Iran needs at least more 1500 CNG stations to serve these cars. It’s good to know that the number of natural gas vehicles was stood at 315,000 in 2007, when the country started its new energy project.
“Currently, the operations of CNG stations are not base on business plan. So, the officials of Iranian government and the Oil Ministry must revise their policies in this section.” Moghaddam concluded.