Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 24
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
The Royal Dutch Shell Company is interested in exploring a role in Iran 's energy sector, Nureddin Wefati, head of Media Relations for the Middle East and North Africa of the company told Trend August 24.
Iran's oil minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh, following a meeting with British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond and representatives from British companies, including Deputy Managing Director of Shell in Tehran said that the giant oil company has expressed interest to return Iran 's energy market.
Commenting on the issue, Wefati said that Shell continues to comply with all relevant international sanctions and at the same time within the boundaries of the law, the company is interested in exploring the role Shell can play in developing Iran 's energy potential.
He also said that Shell is engaging with relevant governments to understand the immediate and long-term impact of the Iran-P5+1(the US, UK, France, Germany, Russia, China) nuclear agreement on the sanction regime.
"It's clear that further steps are needed before sanctions are lifted or suspended."
While responding a question about settling the company's $2.3 billion of debt to Tehran Wefati said, Shell remains unable to settle the outstanding payment to National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) that emerged as a result of applicable sanctions.
"We are now closely following developments in light of the latest agreement, in particular to establish what impact, if any, it could have on our ability to settle our liability in a speedy and compliant manner."
Shell has a history of activities in Iran 's upstream projects, including in South Pars gas field, but the firm pulled out of the field's Phase 13 development in 2008.
Shell also operated Iran 's Soroush and Nowruz oilfields in the Gulf with a capacity of 200,000 barrels per day.
Following his meeting with the UK delegation Zanganeh also said that the British Petroleum was one of the Iran 's best trade partners and may resume buying oil from Tehran.
However the company has refused to make any statement on the issue so far. BP is not commenting on these reports, Toby Odone, deputy head of the BP Press Office told Trend Aug. 24.
Earlier, Bob Dudley, the company's chief executive said the BP was looking for opportunities in Iran 's upstream oil industry.
BP jointly with Iran owns the Rhum gas field in the North Sea in which the National Iranian Oil Company has a 50 percent stake. Iran 's revenues from the field are frozen in an account in London under the sanctions regime.
Edited by CN
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