Iran Signs Prelim. Oil Deal With Total

Iran Signs Prelim. Oil Deal With Total

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) -- Iran has signed a preliminary $4.8 billion agreement with the French oil company Total — Tehran's first such deal after the nuclear accord with world powers removed international sanctions that had squeezed its oil-based economy.

The agreement, announced on Tuesday, is for new development at the vast South Pars gas field, aiming at producing 1.8 billion cubic feet of gas per day to be fed into Iran's gas network.

The deal is to be finalized in 2017.

Total, the China National Petroleum Corporation and Petropars, a subsidiary of Iran's national oil company, will operate it together.

Total will have 50.1 percent of the project, the Iranian subsidiary 19.9 percent and CNPC will have 30 percent.

Total says the first stage of the project is expected to cost about $2 billion.