Shell holds talks in Iran on post-sanction business
LONDON - Reuters
REUTERS photoRoyal Dutch Shell has recently held talks in Iran to discuss business cooperation with the oil and gas-rich country, in preparation for the possible removal of international sanctions on Tehran.
Officials from the Anglo-Dutch company major recently met Iranian officials in Tehran, a Shell spokesman said.
The two sides discussed Shell’s outstanding debt to National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) for crude lifted but not paid for and potential areas of business cooperation should the sanctions be lifted, the spokesperson said.
Shell Chief Executive Officer Ben van Beurden already discussed the debt issue earlier this month on the sidelines of an OPEC meeting in Vienna, the spokesperson added.
Britain, France, Germany, China, Russia and the United States are hoping to reach a deal with Iran over its nuclear program by June 30 that could lead to the easing of sanctions on Iran’s oil industry.
Shell has around $2 billion in outstanding debt to the Islamic Republic as a result of Iranian oil deliveries which Shell had been unable to pay due to sanctions.
Western sanctions have cut Iran’s oil exports by more than half to around 1.1 million bpd from a pre-2012 level of 2.5 million bpd, with the loss of oil income making it difficult to invest in new development and pay for the equipment and services needed to keep its production operating smoothly.