Oil giants ready to finance Iran projects as west lays ground for lifting sanctions

Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 20

By Khalid Kazimov - Trend:

The French company Total has expressed its readiness for financing Iran 's oil projects after the removal of the western imposed sanctions against Tehran.

"The company is planning to cooperate with Iran in providing finance for oil projects and also sharing technical knowledge," the oil ministry's official SHANA news agency quoted Stephane Michel, President of Middle East, Exploration and Production Division at Total, as saying at a conference on oil and energy in Tehran Oct. 19.

"The company was involved in the development projects of the South Pars but it had to stop its activity after intensifying of the sanctions against Iran ," he added.

"Given the plunge in oil prices, Total is planning to decrease the costs of its oil projects in Iran and other parts of the world," Michel said.

He further mentioned that Total takes advantage of modern technologies for developing oil industry and said "in order to decrease the costs of oil production, applying modern technologies is an essential need".

In the meantime, a senior official from the Italian Eni also expressed his company's interest in resuming its activities in Iran 's oil projects, adding Eni has recently developed a modern technology for deep-water drilling that will considerably reduce the costs of oil production.

On Oct. 18, following President Hassan Rouhani's instruction on implementing the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in Iran, US President Barack Obama ordered the government to take steps towards lifting sanctions on Iran . The EU also began preparing to lift the trade sanctions against Tehran as the historic deal that was achieved last July between Tehran and the P5+1(the United States, Britain, France, China, Russia and Germany) came into effect.

In 2013, French oil giant Total was forced to pay US authorities $398 million (320 million euros) in fines over charges it bribed officials in Iran to acquire oil and gas concessions.

Iran 's oil output was about 3.7 mb/d in 2011, but it has decreased due to western sanctions imposed on Iran in mid-2012.

Edited by CN

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