Iran will be looking to sign US$6 billion worth of oil contracts with local drilling and production companies in the next Iranian calendar year that starts on March 21, 2018, Iran’s oil ministry’s news service Shana reported on Monday, quoting Oil Minister Bijan Zangeneh. As Oil Price writes in an article "Iran Plans To Award $6 Billion Oil Contracts To Local Firms", Iran’s Oil Ministry wants to sign major oil projects with local contractors which will be financed by the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) through banks, Zangeneh said.
“A section of the finances in projects will be procured by tapping the National Development Fund but the developers must supply their share of the finances,” the oil minister said.
Iran has more than 100 underdeveloped oil and gas fields, so there is work for all interested companies as long as they have the technical, managerial, and financial capacity to join petroleum projects, according to Zangeneh.
“It is important for Iranian companies to be strong as we are open to all Iranian exploration and production companies, whether in partnership with foreign companies or independently; as long as they can finance the projects, there is work for them to be assigned to,” Shana quoted the minister as saying.
Last week, a local company, Dana Energy, in a consortium led by Russia’s Zarubezhneft, signed an agreement with the NIOC to redevelop the Aban and West Paydar oilfields, with total capex estimated at around US$740 million. Yesterday, NIOC and local firm Pasargad Energy Development Company (PEDC) signed a US$2.4-billion contract for the integrated development of the Sepehr and Jofeir oil fields.
Iran’s push to award more contracts to local firms comes as the Iranian nuclear deal looks increasingly shaky after U.S. President Donald Trump sacked Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State and is replacing him with CIA Director Mike Pompeo who is outspokenly hawkish regarding Iran. Analysts think that with the new appointment, the U.S. could take a harder stance toward Iran that could deepen the uncertainty over the nuclear deal and possible additional U.S. sanctions that could hurt Iran’s oil and/or oil exports.