Surge in Iran visits by EU oil firms

A top Iranian official said on Sunday that there has been a rise in visits by delegations from European oil companies to the country to discuss investments in the Iranian oil sector projects.

Mehdi Hosseini, the chairman of a group at the Ministry of Petroleum assigned to revise the format of Iran’s oil sector contracts, said the rise in visits by European oil delegations follows the intensification of talks between Iran and P5+1 over a final agreement on the Iranian nuclear energy program.

Hosseini also added that about 30 major companies from Europe as well as Asia have visited Tehran over the past few months to explore the opportunities for investments in Iran’s oil and gas projects. Nevertheless, he did not specify the names of the companies.

Iran and P5+1 are in final stages of talks to draft a deal over the Iranian nuclear energy activities. The deal envisages the removal of certain economic sanctions against Iran in return for the country’s steps to limit certain aspects of its nuclear energy activities.  An important part of the economic sanctions that are envisaged to be removed are those that bar foreign investments in the Iranian oil sector projects.

Asked if any US corporation was also involved in talks with Iran over oil sector projects, Hosseini emphasized that Iran has no limitations for investments of American enterprises.

He said what is keeping American companies from investing in the Iranian market are the legal restrictions that the US government has implemented. Still, he emphasized, the absence of US companies in Iran’s oil industry never means that they are not interested in the Iranian oil projects.

The official further emphasized that Iran will soon introduce the new opportunities for foreign investments in the country’s oil and gas projects.

Hosseini and his team are working on a new format of Iranian oil sector contracts named the Iran Petroleum Contract or IPC.

The IPC will be a modification of the traditional buy-back risk service contracts and has been specifically designed to increase the attractiveness of Iranian oil projects for foreign investors.

It offers different stages of exploration, development and production to the contractors as an integrated package.

Also, Iran will set up joint ventures with the contractors to extract reserves at the fields. The contractors will be accordingly reimbursed through a share of production from the fields.

By Press TV