CNPC: Iranian oilfield development ‘economically unjustified’

Iran Materials 16 January 2012 18:35 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, Jan. 16 / Trend F.Milad/

China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) has left Iran's Koohdasht oil block exploration project due to being economically unjustified despite investing up to $50 million four years ago, the Pana news agency reported.

The Chinese company carried out exploration operations over 600 square kilometers area, which led to the discovery of an oilfield in the oil block. But, it announced that developing the oilfield would not be economically justified.

Meanwhile, National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) director for exploration Mahmoud Mohaddes said that developing the oilfield is economically justified for the NIOC.

CNPC began operating in Iran in 2004, signing a service contract with NIOC to take over development of the Masjed Soleiman oilfield. In 2005, the company commenced exploration of the Koohdasht oil block. In January 2009, CNPC entered Iran's upstream oil sector in a strategically significant way, signing a contract with the NIOC to take the lead in developing the North Azadegan oilfield.

Oil Minister Rostam Qasemi said in August 2001 that the oil industry's infrastructure needs more than 500 trillion rials (about $50 billion) of investment to achieve Iran's 20-year economic perspective plan goals.

"By the end of the fifth development plan (2015), the country's oil production must increase to 5.2 million barrels per day (bpd) and this should happen from the country's joint fields," the ISNA news agency quoted Qasemi as saying.