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Monday, March 14, 2011     GET REAL

China paying $6 billion to develop Iran oil fields

NICOSIA — China has agreed to develop Iran's crude oil fields.


An Iranian official said Beijing has contracted Iran's Azadegan oil fields for projects estimated at more than $6 billion. The contractor was identified as the state-owned China National Petroleum Corp. assigned to cooperate with the National Iranian Oil Co, Middle East Newsline reported.

"Separate contracts for developing the north and south Azadegan oilfields have been inked with the Chinese," Iranian Deputy Oil Minister Ahmed Qalebani said.

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"Thorough development of these two giant oil fields requires more than $6 billion, and the possibility of procuring such an amount by a domestic contractor does not exist."

CNPC, which signed a memorandum of understanding in 2009, was said to have pledged to pay 90 percent of development of South Azadegan.

The Chinese contractor has also been given a 70 percent interest in the project.

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