French major Elf Aquitaine is bidding for several development contracts on Iran's giant South Pars gas field, according to a report in the French press.
Elf has responded to Iran's call for tenders on Phases 6-8 of development work on South Pars. And the company is reportedly considering bidding on Phases 4 and 5. The bidding on these phases has been extended for another month, says French financial daily Les Echos.
Earlier this year, Elf also signed a contract for development work on Iran's Dorood and Balal oil fields. And it is reportedly discussing several other projects with Iranian officials.
Apparently, Elf-like most companies considering doing business in Iran-is undaunted by the U.S.'s threats of imposing economic sanctions against non-U.S. companies that invest in the country. The U.S. revealed its hand soon after passing the Iran-Libya Sanctions Act by failing to act against France's Total (now TotalFina), Russia's Gazprom, and Malaysia's Petronas in 1997 when they signed a $2 billion contract for Phases 2 and 3 of the South Pars project.
South Pars field, in the Persian Gulf, extends into Qatari territory, where it is known as North Field. Phase 1 of the South Pars development project is being undertaken by Iranian firm Petro Pars.
The project may ultimately involve as many as 10 development phases.