Iran Delays Signing $16bln Chinese Gas Deal

A03966523.jpgTEHRAN (FNA) – Iran has delayed signing a contract with China National Offshore Oil Company (CNOOC) for the development of its northern Pars gas field.

Iran’s Oil Ministry said the contract, believed to be worth $16bn, was due to be signed on 27 February with the Pars Oil and Gas Company (POGC). The deal had first been announced in late 2006.

However, the absence of Iran’s Oil Minister Gholam Hossein Nozari delayed the signing, according to a POGC spokesman. It is not clear why the minister did not appear.

Iranian news agency Shana said the northern Pars field contains 80 trillion cubic feet of gas and that each phase of development has the capacity to produce 1.2 billion cubic feet per day.

Iran plans to export liquefied natural gas from the field, which is considered the second largest in Iran.

Tehran signed a long-awaited contract with China’s Sinopec in December for the $2bn development of the Yadavaran field in Khouzestan province, close to the border with Iraq.

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