Iran delays London oil conference
Dubai, August 26, 2014
Iran has postponed by three months a conference to offer multinationals the rights to develop oil deposits, giving time for sanctions on the country's oil sector to be lifted, a senior official said.
"We want to provide for all the companies to participate and we know they will have difficulties before Nov. 24," Mehdi Hosseini, the head of the Oil Contracts Revision Committee, told Reuters by telephone.
The London conference, previously scheduled for Nov. 3, will take place in late February 2015.
He expressed hope that Iran would reach a comprehensive nuclear deal with the world powers by the deadline.
Iran and six global powers have given themselves until November 24 to reach agreement on Iran's nuclear programme whereby Iran would limit its atomic activities. In exchange, the West would lift sanctions that are hurting Iran's oil-dependent economy.
"American companies have the most problems legally because of the sanctions. We thought it would be better to postpone the conference to provide an opportunity for them and all foreign companies to come back," he said.
Hosseini said Iran's new contract, known as the Iran Petroleum Contract (IPC) would be a longer duration that the previous "buyback" contract. Iran will offer more than 20 new projects, a mix of exploration, green and brown fields, he added.
He declined to say which companies Iran had been in talks with until sanctions had been lifted.
"Our model will provide flexibility and can be fitted depending on the project," he said.
Iran has previously said the new model for oil field development contracts aims to tempt back foreign energy companies with 25-year deals. - Reuters