Iran, India resume talks on Farzad B gas field
Baku, Azerbaijan, Nov. 5
By Fatih Karimov – Trend
Iran and India’s state-run company ONGC have launched the final round of talks on development of Iran’s Farzad B gas field, Mohammad Meshkinfam, managing director of Pars Oil and Gas Company, said.
If no agreement is reached for cooperation, Iran will hold an international tender for development of the field, Meshkinfam said, Mehr news agency reported Nov. 5.
The financial investment model for development of the gas field is the main source of disagreement between the two parties, he said, adding that if the disputes on financial investment model are settled, technical and executive issues can be settled as well.
The Indian side has only two months to deal with Iran, otherwise the field’s development will be offered to other international companies through tender, Meshkinfam said.
Last month, Bijan Namdar Zanganeh, Iran’s oil minister, said that Tehran is not pleased with the New Delhi-based ONGC’s proposal for development of Farzad B gas field.
Zanganeh said that Iran has granted another opportunity for the Indian side to submit a “reasonable” financial investment model, adding that it will be the last chance for Indian company and Iran will make “another decision” if ONGC fails to offer a reasonable option, Zanganeh said.
Earlier in August it was announced that Iran and India have ended differences over development of Farzad B gas field and ONGC is expected to invest some $5 billion in the project.
In 2008, a consortium of OVL (ONGC Videsh Ltd.), Oil India Ltd. and Indian Oil Corp. discovered the Farzad B gas field, which is estimated to contain 12.8 trillion cubic feet of recoverable reserves.
In August 2010, OVL submitted a revised master development plan (MDP) for producing 60 percent of the field's in-place gas reserves, but did not sign a contract with the Iranian side out of fear it would be exposed to sanctions imposed by the US on Iran's energy sector, which did not allow foreign companies to invest more than $20 million a year in the country's energy sector.
After the West lifted sanctions against Iran under the nuclear agreement, OVL proposed a $3 billion field development plan to Iran to develop Farzad B.