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Japan's Inpex could lose part of Iran oil field stake, trade minister says

Japan's Inpex could lose part of Iran oil field stake, trade minister says

Japan's trade minister said that a state-designated oil development company could lose part of its stake in a US$2 billion (euro1.6 billion) project to develop Iran's Azadegan oil field.
Japan's Inpex Corp. has a 75 percent working interest in the project to develop the field. But talks between Inpex and the National Iranian Oil Company over the project to tap one of the world's largest oil fields have reportedly been stalled because the U.S. has urged Tokyo to freeze the project over Iran's suspected development of nuclear weapons.
"Discussions are currently continuing about the entire framework (of the project)," Trade and Industry Minister Akira Amari told reporters in Tokyo.
When asked if this could include changes to the size of Inpex's stake in the project, Amari replied, "I think that is conceivable."
Amari's comments came in the wake of reports that NIOC managing director Gholam Hussein Nozari had been quoted in Iranian media early Friday as saying Inpex's stake in the project would be cut to 10 percent.
A loss of rights to tap Azadegan would come as a blow to resource-poor Japan, which is heavily dependent on oil from the Mideast.
The two companies signed a contract in 2004 to jointly develop the Azadegan oil field, thought to be one of the largest in the world.


Updated : 2021-07-27 09:38 GMT+08:00