EghtesadOnline: Iran's Petropars Company is talking with international oil and gas majors to forge partnerships to develop domestic exploration and production (E&P) projects under the new model of contracts, known as Iran Petroleum Contract (IPC), the company's project manager said on Saturday.
"European, Japanese and Korean firms are willing to start joint ventures with Petropars given the company's proven record in the South Pars Gas Field mega project," Seyyed Hadi Baqeri was quoted as saying by ILNA.
South Pars is the world’s largest gas field, shared between Iran and Qatar, covering an area of 3,700 square kilometers of Iran’s territorial waters in the Persian Gulf. It adjoins Qatar’s North Field, which measures 6,000 square kilometers.
According to Baqeri, Petropars, which was approved by the Oil Ministry as eligible to develop the country's massive hydrocarbon deposits, is looking forward to IPC tenders and foreign partnerships.
According to the terms of IPC, foreign companies should have an Iranian partner in E&P projects and transfer their knowhow as Iran aims to establish large E&P companies with technical and operational competence.
Underscoring the advantages of IPC over the previous buyback model, he said the new framework will help domestic companies expand their managerial and operational abilities.
"New policies have been adopted to further elevate Petropars standards to international levels," he said without elaboration, noting that as soon as IPC tenders are announced, the most suitable foreign partners will be selected.
The official concurred that lack of financing for major energy projects necessitates partnership with foreign oil and gas companies.
"Petropars cannot cope with its financial difficulties unless domestic banks as well as foreign companies help in removing the funding restraints and minimizing investment risk," he noted.
Petropars CEO Mohammad Javad Shams also said that his company is in talks with the Royal Dutch Shell on conducting feasibility studies to develop oil and gas fields, according to Financial Tribune.
Shams added that Petropars has held talks with several foreign companies, including an unnamed Italian-German group, to fund energy projects at home.
Established in 1998, Petropars is one of the country's leading contractors of upstream oil and gas projects.