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China pulls out of Iranian gas field development project

Iran's Minister of Petroleum, Bijan Namdar Zangeneh in Tehran, Iran on 6 May 2018 [Fatemeh Bahrami/Anadolu Agency]
Iran's Minister of Petroleum, Bijan Namdar Zangeneh in Tehran, Iran on 6 May 2018 [Fatemeh Bahrami/Anadolu Agency]

China’s national petroleum company CNPC pulled out of developing phase 11 of the country’s giant South Pars gas field, Iran’s oil minister said on Sunday.

Bijan Zangeneh told reporters that the CNPC dropped the project, meaning that Petropars would develop the project alone.

“The fate of the South Pars Phase 11 has been determined and Petropars will continue developing the project alone,” Zangeneh was quoted as saying by Shana, Iranian Oil Ministry’s news outlet.

In 2015, National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) signed a contract with a consortium of Total, CNPC International, and Petropars to develop the offshore project in Persian Gulf waters.

Following the US’ withdrawal from the nuclear deal in May 2018, some foreign companies left Iran, among them were Total, which also had pulled out of the contract.

On May 16, 2018, Total announced that it would “not be in a position to continue” the project in Iran and would “have to unwind all related operations before November 4, 2018 unless the company was granted a specific project waiver by the US authorities with the support of the French and European authorities”.

Read: US targets Iran’s petrochemical industry with sanctions

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