TEHRAN, Nov. 28 (UPI) -- A new arrangement with oilfield services company Schlumberger is a source of optimism for post-sanctions Iran, a managing director said from Tehran.
Schlumberger signed a memorandum of understanding with the National Iranian Oil Co. for work on oil fields straddling the western Iranian border with Iraq. Bijan Alipour, the managing director of the NIOC, said the company, the largest of its kind if the world, has a legacy in Iran dating back to before the Islamic Revolution in 1979.
"I am optimistic with future cooperation between the two companies," he was quoted by the Iranian Oil Ministry's news website SHANA as saying.
The Iranian government said Schlumberger could play a role in as many as three Iranian oil fields.
The agreement comes about two weeks after Norwegian oil and gas company DNO said it signed a memorandum of understanding to examine oil field development in Iran. DNO already has a strong presence in neighboring Iraq and the company said it would work alongside the NIOC in development of the western Changuleh oil field, which is estimated to hold more than 2 billion barrels of oil in place.
Iran is a member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries working to regain a market share lost to sanctions. Iran reported to OPEC that total production of oil in October was 3.9 million barrels, an increase of 5.6 percent from the previous month.
The developments come as Iran tries to bring new foreign investors to an energy sector slowly reopening after years of isolation because of Western sanctions. Sanctions pressures have eased since Iran agreed to a multilateral nuclear agreement last year.
Schlumberger has offices in Texas, lists its stocks on the U.S. market, but is incorporated in the Dutch Antilles. The company had no public statement on the agreement reached with Iran.