Sanctions probable reason preventing Chinese from completing SP11

TEHRAN, May 28 (MNA) – Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said on Tuesday that sanctions are a likely reason preventing Chinese from starting cooperation with Iran on completion of phase 11 of the South Pars gas field.

He said that the Chinese have recently left Iran but talks are under way with them over completion of phase 11 of South Pars.

Explaining that Iranian companies cannot complete phase 11 by themselves he added that “the head of the consortium is a Chinese company with an-80-percent stake in the project, thus the Chinese should announce readiness for completion of the phase; however, sanctions are probably preventing them from doing so.”

The 11th phase of the South Pars contract was signed between National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) and a consortium of France’s Total, China’s CNPC International and Petropars Company in Tehran on July 3, 2017.

Based on the $4.879 billion deal, Total was operator of the SP11 project with a 50.1 percent interest, in partnership with Chinese state-owned oil and gas company CNPC (30 percent), and NIOC subsidiary Petropars (19.9 percent).

SP11 is to be developed in two phases. The first phase, set to cost around $2 billion, comprises 30 wells and two wellhead platforms connected to existing onshore treatment facilities by two subsea pipelines.

Depending on reservoir conditions as production progresses, offshore compression facilities could be added, a first on the South Pars field.

Following US’s imposition of sanctions on Tehran after a May decision by Washington to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal, Total announced it would no longer stay in the SP. 11 contract and its stocks were automatically transferred to the Chinese side of the deal as it is stipulated in the contract.

HJ/FNA 13980307000612

News Code 145806

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