Iran has named 29 companies from more than a dozen countries as being allowed to bid for oil and gas projects using the new, less restrictive Iran Petroleum Contract (IPC) model, Reuters reported.
China National Petroleum Corporation, Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Total SA are among the companies that will be invited to bid in tenders, according to a list published on the website of state producer National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC). Total, along with Lukoil PJSC and the oil unit of Gazprom PJSC, are some of the companies on the list that have already signed preliminary agreements with Iran to study oil fields for potential future development, informed Bloomberg.
The list did not include oil major BP, as reports indicate that BP had opted out of the bidding because of concerns over possible renewed US-Iran tensions after President-elect Donald Trump takes office in January.
Iran hopes its new IPC, part of an effort to sweeten the terms it offers on oil development deals, will attract foreign investors and boost production. Accordingly, Iran aims to attract more than $100b in foreign investment to speed growth in its energy industry after sanctions cut international companies’ involvement in developing the world’s fourth-largest oil reserves. Since sanctions eased in January, the Persian Gulf producer has doubled exports as crude prices rallied.
Iran boosted oil production in 2016 to 3.67mb/d by November. Oil Minister, Bijan Namdar Zanganeh, said in November that the country was targeting about 5.7mb/d of crude and condensate production early in the 2020s.