Iran Oil Minister: French Oil Giant Total Pulls Out of Iran

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) -
The logo of French oil giant Total is seen at La Defense business and financial district in Courbevoie, near Paris, France. (Reuters/Charles Platiau)

Iran’s oil minister says France’s oil giant Total SA has pulled out of Iran after canceling its $5 billion, 20-year agreement to develop the country’s massive South Pars offshore natural gas field over renewed U.S. sanctions.

The parliament’s website ICANA.ir quoted Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh as saying on Monday that since Total first announced its decision a while ago, Iran has been in the process of “looking for an alternative” to Total. He didn’t elaborate.

There was no immediate comment from Total.

Earlier this month, Iran said China’s state-owned petroleum corporation took a majority 80 percent share of the project. CNPC originally had some 30 percent of shares in the project.

The renewed U.S. sanctions took effect in August, after America’s pullout from the nuclear deal in May.