TEHRAN – Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said France’s energy giant Total has started work on the country’s giant South Pars gas field.
New US sanctions against Iran are unlikely to affect the country’s oil and gas contracts with foreign states, Zanganeh told reporters on Saturday.
“Total has begun its work to develop Iran’s South Pars Phase 11,” the minister added.
Total became the first Western oil major to sign an agreement with Iran to develop phase 11 of Iran’s South Pars, the world’s largest gas field. Total is the operator of the $5 billion project with a 50.1 percent stake.
Recently, Total Chief Executive Officer Patrick Pouyanne said the French oil and gas major would push ahead with its Iran gas project if the United States decided to impose unilateral sanctions on Tehran.
“If Iran is compliant, if the European Union and China and Russia continue to consider that the JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) can be applied, then that means the US would have to take unilateral sanctions…,” Pouyanne said.
“But we will try on our side to obtain the comfort that we can continue the project, which will be our priority,” he added.
On October 13, US President Donald Trump refused to certify that Iran was complying with the nuclear deal, warning that he might ultimately terminate the agreement.
The US Congress now has about two months to decide whether to reinstate sanctions against Tehran.
Pouyanne said Total was weighing its options and all would depend on the US Congress and if it decides to reinstate the sanctions, and what kinds of sanctions.
date: 4 November 2017 id: 13938 source: tassnim