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CNPC to take Total's place in major Iranian gas project

Business Materials 6 September 2018 13:58
The managing director of Pars Oil and Gas Company (POGC) said China's state-owned CNPC would assume Total’s share of around 80 percent in the development of Phase 11 of South Pars.
CNPC to take Total's place in major Iranian gas project

Tehran, Iran, Sept. 6

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The managing director of Pars Oil and Gas Company (POGC) said China's state-owned CNPC would assume Total’s share of around 80 percent in the development of Phase 11 of South Pars.

“CNPC would shoulder 80 percent of the cost of the project and Iran’s Petropars will hold the remaining 20 percent,” Mohammad Meshkin-Fam told ILNA on September 6.

So far, the Chinese oil giant, which already operates two oil fields in Iran, has spent about $20 million on planning to develop the field.

The official added that CNPC has no problem financing the project and will make it operational in due time.

In July 2017, the NIOC (National Iranian Oil Company) awarded the project to a consortium comprising Total (50.1 percent), China’s CNPC (30 percent) and Iran’s Petropars (19.9 percent) through a contract worth around $4 billion.

However, when the US announced that it would restore sanctions against Iran, the French major said it would withdraw from Phase 11 to avoid American punitive measures.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Meshkin-Fam said Tehran has no plans to sue Total for leaving the contract, saying, “International conditions forced the company to quit, so there is no good reason to sue it."

Total signed up to develop the project back in 2009, but was forced to abandon its projects in Iran in 2012 when France joined a US-led campaign to put sanctions, including an oil embargo, against the country.

The objective of the development of Phase 11 was to send a daily of above 56 million cubic meters (around 2 billion cubic feet) of natural gas into Iran’s domestic grid from 2021.

In early August, US President Donald Trump signed an executive order which made the sanctions against Iran effective.

The sanctions would in the first wave prevent Iran’s access to the US dollar among other restrictions. The second wave to hit in November would ban investments in Iran’s oil and gas projects.

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