Total to sign $4.8 bn gas deal with Iran : oil ministry

Published by with AFP, on 02 July 2017, 11h15 

Iran is seeking foreign investment and technology to develop South Pars, one of the world’s largest natural gas fields

French energy giant Total is to sign a $4.8 billion agreement to develop an Iranian offshore gas field, the oil ministry said Sunday, in the biggest foreign deal since sanctions were eased.

“The international agreement for the development of phase 11 of South Pars will be signed on Monday in the presence of the oil ministry and managers of Total, the Chinese company CNPC and Iranian company Petropars,” a ministry spokesman told AFP.

Total signed a preliminary deal with Iran in November as the lead partner alongside China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) and Iran’s Petropars.

The French company will operate the site with a 50.1 percent stake in the $4.8 billion (4.2 billion euro) project.

CNPC will own 30 percent and Petropars 19.9 percent.

The French firm was initially due to sign the contract in early 2017, but CEO Patrick Pouyanne said in February that it would wait to see whether the US administration of President Donald Trump reimposed sanctions on Iran.

Trump threatened during his campaign to tear up a landmark accord between Iran and six world powers which came into force in January 2016, which eased sanctions in exchange for curbs to Tehran’s nuclear programme.

But he has softened his stance since taking office, with his administration continuing to waive the sanctions every few months as required under the deal.

However, Washington has imposed new measures targeting Iran’s missile programme and activities in the region.

The 20-year phase 11 project will eventually pump 50.9 million cubic metres (1.8 billion cubic feet) of gas per day into Iran’s national grid.

It marks a breakthrough in the oil ministry’s efforts to attract Western investment and know-how to improve its outdated energy infrastructure.




Iran to sign gas deal with France’s Total and China’s CNPC

Iran says French energy giant Total is to sign a contract worth close to $5bn (£3.8bn) to develop an offshore gas field in the Gulf.

It is the biggest foreign deal since most economic sanctions against the country were lifted in 2016.

Oil ministry officials said the deal to develop the South Pars gas field would be signed on Monday in Tehran, with Total getting a 50.1% stake.
China’s CNPC would hold a 30% stake and Iran’s Petropars 19.9%.

Total was planning to sign the contract several months ago, but decided to wait and see if the Trump administration in the US would re-impose sanctions on Tehran.

What lifting Iran sanctions means for world markets

The offshore field, which is shared between Iran and Qatar, was first developed in the 1990s.

Total was one of the biggest investors in Iran before international sanctions were imposed in 2006 over suspicions the country was trying to develop nuclear arms.

Last month Total’s boss Patrick Pouyanne indicated the firm was ready to make an initial $1bn investment in Iran, the third largest producer in oil body Opec.