Eni CEO in Tehran for major project

Eni Chief Executive Claudio Descalzi was meeting Minister of Petroleum Bijan Zangeneh in Tehran Wednesday to discuss new opportunities for the Italian energy company in Iran. 

The talks were expected to focus on resumption of oil purchase from Iran and Eni’s return to the Darkhovin oilfield in the country’s southwest.

The Italian oil and gas major halted operations in Darkhovin, mainly in 2010, to avoid US sanctions for business with Iran. It had signed a $550 million deal to produce 160,000 barrels per day of oil from the field in two phases.

It also had a stake in the development of Doroud oilfield on the Khark island and Balal in the Persian Gulf.

Eni is reportedly vying for the third phase of the project to add a further 100,000 bpd to output from Darkhovin.

Descalzi is visiting Tehran along with Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni and Economic Development Minister Federica Guidi as part of a delegation to discuss trade and political cooperation following the successful conclusion of nuclear talks.

Managing Director of Petroleum Engineering and Development Company (PEDEC) Abdorreza Hosseinnejad has said Iran was open to negotiations with foreign investors for operations in southwest oilfields.

“There is no problem for negotiations with Eni,” the Mehr news agency quoted him as saying. The official said there was need for about $1.3 billion to develop the third stage of Darkhovin.

Italy’s Enel had also held negotiations with Iran to carry out LNG projects before leaving them under sanctions.

Another Italian company, Edison International, had a $107 million deal with the National Iranian Oil Company for oil exploration in Iran’s Dayyer oilfield before bowing out.

By Press TV