Royal Dutch Shell and its partner Repsol of Spain have signed a service agreement with the Iranian Oil Ministry to continue work on developing phases 13 and 14 of the giant South Pars gas field.
National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) Director Gholam-Hossein Nozari recently said the contract is the "biggest in terms of investment and the volume of gas converted to LNG."
The gas deal came as a great blow to the White House, which has been making strenuous efforts to demonize Iran and depict it as an international pariah conducting questionable nuclear activities, which are constantly monitored by the UN nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency.
Iran, Pakistan, and India also agreed recently on a pricing formula for the export of Iranian gas to India, despite the pressure Washington has been placing on New Delhi to scrap talks with Iran over the projected gas pipeline.
Last December PetroChina also signed a deal with the National Iranian Gas Exports Company in which Iran agreed to sell China three million tons of gas from the Pars LNG Project over 25 years, beginning in 2011.
These deals and similar ones made over the last year demonstrate the importance of relations with Iran in general and Iran's large share of world energy supplies in particular.
The U.S. has been trying to scare off domestic and foreign investors in order to squeeze Iran economically and create social unrest in an attempt to force Iran to relinquish its inalienable right to use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.
However, foreign companies cannot ignore their interests in the Iranian energy market, which holds the world's second largest gas reserves after Russia.
Iran's energy engagement with giant economic powers such as India and China and the plan to transfer Iran's gas to Western Europe in the near future have frustrated Washington.
Iran is also securing gas markets in the Caucasus region.
It is hard for U.S. officials to accept that Iran is gradually emerging as one of the world's main oil and gas suppliers after Russia and thus they are making every effort to hinder Iran.
However, Washington will surely fail since it cannot even convince its allies to ignore Iran's large market. This policy has also undermined U.S. companies that seek to invest in the Iranian energy market.
Iran's recent energy agreements have set back the U.S. neocons' plan to economically isolate Tehran.
The baseless allegations about Iran's nuclear program and the psychological operations against the Islamic Republic have come to naught as more and more countries are investing in Iran's oil and gas sectors and Iran is becoming a major player in the field of energy.
... Payvand News - 2/1/07 ... --