TEHRAN, Iran - An announcement on Sunday by the President of Iran Hassan Rouhani says the Islamic Republic has discovered an oil field that will boost Iran's reserves by a third.
The discovery in Khuzestan province comes as welcome news to a country besieged by crippling U.S. sanctions which have devastated the economy and collapsed its currency.
"We have discovered a new big oil field with 53 billion barrels of reserves," Rouhani told the people of Yazd in a speech on Sunday.
He said the oil field extended from Bostan and continues to Omidieh.
"The U.S. should know that Iran is a rich country and despite animosity and cruel sanctions, Iranian workers and engineers discovered a new oil field," the said.
Iran already contains the world's fourth-largest proven deposits of crude oil and the world's second-largest deposits of natural gas.
The new oil field will become the country's second-largest, the largest being the field in Ahvaz, in the southwest of the country, which has reserves of 65 billion barrels.
A major drawback for Iran is its ability to market oil exports due to the sanctions imposed by U.S. President Donald Trump after he withdrew the United States from the Iran nuclear deal in 2015.