Iran News ...


07/20/15

US oil service giants yearn for return to Iran

Source: Press TV

Halliburton and Schlumberger, both among the world’s largest oilfield services companies, are waiting in hopeful anticipation that Iran will ramp up oil exports, US media have said.

The Houston-based giants have “a well-established presence” in the Persian Gulf region and given the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC)’s vast oilfield service needs, the US firms are positioned to benefit, the Houston Business Journal said.

"They are the quiet beneficiaries," Randall Grace, lead energy analyst at Houston-based Chilton Capital Management, told the publication.

"Schlumberger is the Western company with substantial expertise in Iran, operating for several decades until sanctions forced their departure in 2013," said Grace.

Schlumberger's commitment to Iran is so strong that one of its wholly-owned subsidiaries forked over $232.7 million in penalties to the US Department of Justice in March, the Journal said.

“And let's not forget the incentives. Iranian revenue was $418 million for Schlumberger in 2012, with operating margins north of 50%, more than double the corporate average of about 20%,” it added.

“The profitability potentials are huge,” said Grace, according to the Houston Business Journal.

Non-US affiliates of Schlumberger continued to work for the NIOC and its subsidiaries after the American company ceased operations in Iran in 2013.

According to Schlumberger’s Chief Executive Paal Kibsgaard, cited by the media, the company was awaiting the lifting of sanctions on Iran to return to the country.

"When the sanctions are lifted and when it is permissible, we will evaluate going back in," he was quoted as saying.

Iran's energy officials have said the country would raise oil output by 500,000 barrels per day after two months and by 1 million bpd after six months when the sanctions were lifted.

On Wednesday, NIOC Managing Director Rokneddin Javadi said Iran's oil production could reach its pre-sanctions level of 4 million bpd within six to 12 months if there is enough demand. He said NIOC had tested a production increase and been ordered to raise output in all fields.

 

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