Patrick Pouyanné

Total CEO confirms inking gas deal with Iran by summer

FNA- CEO of the French energy giant Total Patrick Pouyanné underlined that his company is planning to conclude a gas deal with Iran’s South Pars zone.

“The signing of the US sanctions waivers, among other hurdles, cleared the path for the deal to be signed,” Pouyanné told reporters on Saturday.

Pouyanné also said that he has had a constructive meeting with Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zangeneh in Vienna on Friday.

Total signed a preliminary agreement with Iran last year to develop Phase 11 of the country’s giant South Pars gas field. The French major company would lead a consortium that comprises China’s CNPC and Iran’s Petropars over the project.

Pouyanné told reporters in February that his company’s final investment decision on Phase 11 would depend on whether US President Donald Trump waives executive orders against investments in the Iranian energy sector.

Pouyanné declared that his company is trying to develop its own mechanism for transactions with Iran.

“Total is trying to develop its own channels to carry out banking affairs concerning Iran without falling afoul of US primary sanctions that still restrict doing financial activities with Tehran,” Pouyanné said.

He reiterated that his company was trying to find European lenders willing to be a day-to-day banker in Iran to press ahead with its investment plans in Iran.

“We have identified some, I would say, medium-sized banks that are ready to work with Iran,” Pouyanné added.