France’s energy giant Total says the election of Donald Trump as the President of the United States will not undermine its investments in Iran.
Philippe Sauquet, the firm's head of gas, renewables and power, told reporters that an agreement that Iran awarded Total earlier this week would not be impacted by Trump's election.
"We have always said that we are interested in returning to Iran on condition that the investments that are proposed to us are sufficiently attractive and knowing that for us, it was out of the question to do anything that would contravene international rules," Sauquet told reporters on the sidelines of an energy summit in Paris.
"The election that took place in the United States does not change anything," Reuters quoted him as saying.
Sauquet’s comments follow concerns that Trump might try to materialize his earlier threats that he would undo a nuclear deal which the administration of President Barack Obama sealed with Iran last year.
The deal – which Iran signed last summer with the US as well as other members of the Security Council plus Germany – envisages the removal of a series of economic sanctions against Iran in return for steps by the country to restrict certain aspects of its nuclear energy program.
The removal of the sanctions against Iran – that took effect in January – means that international companies will be now allowed to invest in the country’s oil and gas projects among other privileges outlined in the deal.
Total on Tuesday became the first western energy company to sign a major deal with Tehran since the lifting of Iran sanctions.
The agreement for the development of Phase 11 of South Pars was signed between the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) and Total which would team up with China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) and Iran’s Petropars in the project.
The consortium would make a total investment of $4.8 billion in Phase 11 – what is already expected to break the ice for major post-sanctions investments in the country.
Iran expects to produce as much as 56 million cubic meters per day of natural gas from Phase 11 once it is in full swing.