May 4, 2015 / 8:05 PM / in 5 years

Eni discusses arrears in meeting with Iranian oil minister

MILAN, May 4 (Reuters) - Representatives of Italian oil and gas company Eni met recently with the Iranian oil minister to discuss a series of issues including contractual arrears, an Eni spokeswoman confirmed on Monday.

Iranian news agency Tasnim cited the managing director of Iran’s Petroleum Engineering and Development Company on Monday as saying Eni had held talks with minister Bijan Zanganeh “a few days ago”.

Eni, which stopped investing in Iran in 2001, is allowed to recoup previous investments by being paid in oil.

“Eni reiterated its interest in Iran, providing sanctions are lifted and contract terms are mutually favourable,” the spokeswoman said.

Even if Iran and the West agree a deal curbing Tehran’s nuclear programme, it could still take several years for oil companies to agree contracts and start investing in Iran’s sanctions-hit oil industry. (Reporting by Stephen Jewkes; editing by David Clarke)

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