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China, Iran sign biggest oil & gas deal
Updated: 2004-10-31 08:51

China's oil giant Sinopec Group has signed a US$70 billion oil and natural gas agreement with Iran, which is China's biggest energy deal with the No. 2 OPEC producer.

Under a memorandum of understanding signed Thursday, Sinopec Group will buy 250 million tons of liquefied natural gas over 30 years from Iran and develop the giant Yadavaran field.

Iran is also committed to export 150,000 barrels per day of crude oil to China for 25 years at market prices after commissioning of the field.

Iran's oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh, who is on a two-day visit to Beijing pursuing closer ties, said Iran is China's biggest oil supplier and wants to be its long-term business partner.

Official figures show that China imported 226 million tons of oil in2003, about 13 percent of which coming from Iran.

Beijing expects to secure foreign energy supplies by the deals for its economy, which has turned China into a major oil importer but suffers severe power shortages.

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