'Sanctions disrupt Iran-India projects'

Report claims "opportunities in oil and gas" marred by sanctions.

July 19, 2010 16:30
1 minute read.
THE BUSHEHR nuclear plant in southern Iran will so

THE BUSHEHR nuclear plant in southern Iran 311. (photo credit: AP)

The latest round of unilateral US sanctions against Iran could derail planned energy projects between Iran and India, said India's Petroleum Secretary S. Sundareshan, the Wall Street Journal reported Monday.

Indian energy companies were considering deals with Iran, a large potential oil source for the fast-growing country. The two countries recently restarted talks over a $7.4 billion natural gas pipeline from Iran to India and Pakistan, said the Wall Street Journal.

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"These are Indian public-sector companies who are negotiating these [deals]," Mr. Sundareshan said. "We've asked them to obtain appropriate legal advice."

Shortly after the US sanctions went into effect, Indian Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao said India was concerned that "certain unilateral sanctions recently imposed by individual countries" might "have a direct and adverse impact on Indian companies and more importantly, on our energy security.

"You would appreciate that there are immense opportunities in the oil and gas sector in Iran," said  Sundareshan. "There are unexplored frontiers in gas, which provide immense opportunities for the country. We would certainly like to utilize these opportunities without sanctions."

The Wall Street Journal said that US sanctions penalize companies that invest more than $20 million a project that "significantly contributes to the enhancement of Iran's ability to develop petroleum resources." Penalties include measures such as credit restrictions from US financial institutions.

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