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Iran Blasts UAE for Deterring Progress over Gas Deal

TEHRAN (Fars News Agency)- The managing director of the National Iranian Oil Company blamed Crescent Petroleum in the United Arab Emirates for thwarting progress on export deals.

Iran and Crescent have been in negotiations since 2006 on a deal to export 600 million cubic feet of natural gas per day to the UAE from the offshore Salman gas field in the Iranian province of Fars.

Crescent said earlier this week it was confident the deal would materialize, though NIOC Director Seifollah Jashnsaz said Crescent had failed in its obligations, the Iranian oil ministry's website Shana reported.

"The Crescent company has not fulfilled some of its commitments in this deal," he said, adding price mechanisms had complicated negotiations.

Iranian lawmakers had argued the export price was not high enough. Tehran has argued the energy sector was undervalued as it lobbied for production cuts by the OPEC oil cartel. For his part, Jashnsaz hinted price was not the sole issue of contention.

"Before finalizing the price of the deal, the two sides should reach an agreement on the provision of valid guarantees and the change in the place for the delivery of the gas," he said.

... Payvand News - 11/07/08 ... --

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