NIOC-Owned North Sea Field Given US Sanctions Waiver

NIOC-Owned North Sea Field Given US Sanctions Waiver

The US Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) has issued a waiver that will allow the bypassing of US sanctions placed on the Rhum gas field in the UK’s North Sea, which is 50% owned by the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), Energy Voice reported.

The conditional license, granted under certain conditions to be implemented by November 4, will allow UK oil and gas company Serica to complete its acquisitions of BP’s stakes in the Bruce, Keith, and Rhum fields.

Serica’s potential purchase of Total’s interests in the Bruce and Keith fields is contingent on the completion of its deal with BP, which is expected to be wrapped up on November 30.

The waiver stipulates that the NIOC’s share of the proceeds from Rhum will be held in escrow while US sanctions remain active. Iran will also have no say in the field’s operations. The license is valid until October 31, 2019, but may be renewed.

Certain US and US-owned entities will be allowed to continue providing goods, services, and support involving Rhum.

“We welcome the constructive approach taken by all parties. This outcome protects a valuable British asset which, together with the Bruce and Keith fields, produces about 5% of UK offshore gas production,” Serica CEO Mitch Flegg said.

US sanctions on Iranian energy activity are set to take full effect on November 4, restricting international entities from dealing with the Islamic Republic.


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