Iran Suspends Chinese Contract for North Pars Natural Gas Field

Iran has suspended a development contract for its North Pars natural gas field with China National Petroleum Corporation International Ltd., "until further notice."

China National Petroleum Corporation International Ltd. is a subsidiary of China National Oil and Gas Exploration and Development Corporation and is the overseas oil and gas investment arm of China National Petroleum Corporation.

Pars Oil and Gas Company managing director Mousa Souri said, "We will decide on the continuation of CNPCI activities in the North Pars gas field when they fulfill their commitments in Iran's South Pars gas field, which is Iran's first priority," Teheran's Fars News Agency reported.

Iran had previously warned the CNPCI that its concession would be voided and transferred to domestic companies if it did not step up work on phase 11 of Iran's massive offshore Persian Gulf South Pars gas field. The 3,700 square mile South Pars natural gas field is shared by Iran and Qatar, with development of the Iranian portion divided into 24 phases. According to the International Energy Agency, South Pars is the world's largest gas field and holds an estimated 1,800 trillion cubic feet of natural gas and roughly 50 billion barrels of natural gas condensates.

(Joao Peixe is Deputy Editor of The original article appears


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