AFP: Iran and China have signed a preliminary accord under which China would buy 10 million tonnes a year of liquefied natural gas (LNG) for 25 years in a deal worth 100 billion dollars, the student news agency ISNA said Friday. ISNA quoted Deputy Oil Minister Hadi Nejad-Hosseinian as saying the deal could eventually reach 15 to 20 million tonnes a year, taking the total value to as much as 200 billion dollars. AFP

TEHRAN - Iran and China have signed a preliminary accord under which China would buy 10 million tonnes a year of liquefied natural gas (LNG) for 25 years in a deal worth 100 billion dollars, the student news agency ISNA said Friday.

ISNA quoted Deputy Oil Minister Hadi Nejad-Hosseinian as saying the deal could eventually reach 15 to 20 million tonnes a year, taking the total value to as much as 200 billion dollars.

Delivery could not begin for at least five years, as Iran must first build the plants to liquefy the natural gas.

The memorandum of understanding also grants to Chinese oil giant Sinopec the right to exploit the Yadavaran oil field on a buy-back basis in cooperation with a major international oil company.

Experts say that after Yadavaran is developed, which is expected to take four years, it will have a production capacity of 300,000 barrels per day. Of that, Sinopec would take 150,000 bpd.