Iran, China to expand oil cooperation

TEHRAN, Aug 21 (Shana) – Chinese SINOPEC and CNPC are to continue cooperation with Iran in the second phase of projects to develope North Azadegan and Yadavaran fields.

The 16th Iran-China Joint Economic Commission also decided last week for closer contacts and negotiations for further expansion of mutual cooperation in the oil sector.

Deputy Managing Director of National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) for Development and Engineering Affairs, Gholam-Reza Manouchehri, told Shana that the Chinese party has voiced interest in promotion of investment in the upstream and downstream sectors.

Manouchehr said the decisions were made in meetings with Chinese Minister of Commerce, Deputy Prime Minister and senior economic delegations of China.

He said huge financial resources in the availability of such big Chinese companies as CNPC and SINOPEC and Iran’s need to attract capital on the other hand and also the two countries’ strategies for development necessitate Iranian oil industry to go on with the approach of maximizing national interests and use of the opportunities available in the best possible manner.

He also referred to his separate meetings with the CNPCI and SINOPEC senior directors in recent visit to China and said the two sides had reached decision for CNPCI cooperation with Iran in the second phase of project for development of North Azadegan field and the SINOPEC’s contribution to second phase of the project for development of Yadavaran field.

He said in a visit the Chinese party will pay to Tehran in the coming weeks, talks on commercial, economic and technical aspect of development of the fields will be finalized.

The official said the NIOC wants reconsideration of the framework of former agreements regarding activity in the second phase development of the said fields, and said appropriate time frame and application of the latest technologies are the points NIOC has been stressing in the second phase of the North Azadegan and Yadavaran fields.

He said cooperation with the Chinese companies for implementation of the projects will be in line with the buy-back contracts reached for first phase of development of the fields.

He went on to say that North Azadegan and Yadavaran joint fields are to be officially operational and repayment to the contractors of the two projects will start in the third quarter of this Iranian year.

Manouchehri said the Chinese companies are willing to increase crude imports from Iran. Also in recent visit, the two sides reached agreement on cooperation to implement the project for increasing oil extraction from Masjed Soleiman field.

He hoped for further engagement of Iranian and Chinese parties in implementing different oil projects as the Chinese companies have voiced willingness in investment in Iranian oil industry projects and as Iran is interested in attracting foreign investment.