CNPC Withdraws From South Pars Gas Field Project, Shargh Reports

China National Petroleum Corp. has withdrawn from a project to develop phase 11 of the South Pars natural-gas field, Tehran-based Shargh newspaper reported.

CNPC, as the state-owned company is known, sent 30 of its experts back to China from the port city of Assaluyeh and halted operations at its office in the capital, according to the newspaper. Mousa Souri, the managing director of Iran’s Pars Oil and Gas Co., declined to comment on the report, Shargh said.

Last month, Iranian oil minister Rostam Qasemi set a deadline of March 2013 for CNPC to start developing phase 11 of the gas field, which Iran shares with Qatar.