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Iran: French Firm Out of South Pars Gas Project, China’s Is In

Iranian laborers work at a unit of South Pars gas field in Asalouyeh Seaport, north of Persian Gulf, Iran, Nov. 19, 2015. China's state-owned CNPC energy company now owns 80 percent of the project's share after Total dropped out because of U.S. sanctions.

Iran’s official IRNA news agency is reporting that China’s state-owned petroleum corporation has taken a majority share of the country’s South Pars gas project after French oil and gas company Total announced it would pull out because renewed U.S. economic sanctions against Iran.

The Saturday report quotes Mohammad Mostafavi, an official in Iran’s state oil company, as saying CNPC now owns 80 percent of the shares in the $5 billion project, having bought shares from Total.

CNPC originally had about 30 percent of shares in the project.

The renewal of U.S. sanctions took effect on Tuesday.