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German company ADL and Iran’s Sepahan Oil Company (SOC) have signed an agreement to cooperate in technology transfer in oil and gas industry lubricants, Iranian media report.
European embassies have put a lot of effort in paving the way for signing the cooperation agreement, Mohammad Ebrahimi, the chief executive officer of SOC, was quoted as saying by Fars news agency.
According to the Iranian official, ADL will carry out the project in cooperation with its Austrian and Swiss partners.
While Iranian media report the signing of an agreement with a European company, many European companies are backing out of Iran or putting agreements and projects on hold in order to comply with U.S. sanctions on Iran and avoid becoming subjects of some sort of secondary sanctions if they continue to do business with Iran.
Denmark’s engineering company Haldor Topsoe, a leading industrial catalyst producer, is ceasing activities in Iran and is cutting around 200 jobs as a consequence of the planned U.S. sanctions on Iran.
Switzerland’s railway firm Stadler Rail is suspending plans for an underground railway system in Tehran.
Germany’s carmaker Daimler dropped plans to expand its Iranian business, while France’s Peugeot took steps to suspend its joint venture activities, and Renault has said that it will comply with the U.S. sanction regime.
Other major German companies, railway operator Deutsche Bahn as well as Deutsche Telekom, are ending their projects in Iran, after the first new U.S. sanctions on Iran snapped back last week.
In the oil and gas industry, France’s major Total has said that it would exit the South Pars gas project if it doesn’t get a U.S. waiver. French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said last month Total’s waiver request has been rejected, together with other requests from French firms.
Regarding Iran’s oil exports to Europe—which, combined, is Iran’s third-biggest customer after China and India—European refiners are expected to significantly drop their Iranian purchases. According to analysts, Europe could be one of the regions where the U.S. might manage to bring Iranian oil exports to ‘zero’.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.