News ID: 214591
Published: 0256 GMT May 06, 2018

Total risks losing gas field stake to CNPC if it quits Iran

Total risks losing gas field stake to CNPC if it quits Iran

Total SA will lose its stake in the South Pars Gas Field to its Chinese partner if the Paris-based company withdraws from the country, said the head of National Iranian Oil Company.

Total has spent $90 million on developing the offshore field and won't be compensated before production begins, Ali Kardor said on Sunday at a news conference in Tehran, reported Bloomberg.

France's Total signed Iran's biggest international energy deal so far since world powers agreed in 2015 to lift economic sanctions on the Persian Gulf country in exchange for modification on its nuclear program.

The company committed in July to develop Phase 11 of the giant South Pars field, pledging $1 billion in investment.

Total has a 50.1 percent stake in the 20-year South Pars project, with China National Petroleum Corp. holding 30 percent and Iran's Petropars, 19.9 percent.

If Total withdraws, Iran will transfer the company's full stake to CNPC, based on the contract, Kardor said.

Iran has the world's largest gas reserves, estimated by BP Plc at 1,183 trillion cubic feet (33 trillion cubic meters), and is the third-biggest oil producer in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.

Total had been working at South Pars until international sanctions forced it to withdraw in 2009. Production from the project would be two billion cubic feet a day of gas, Kardor said in July.

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