Royal Dutch Shell is finding it difficult to pay Iran about $1 billion due to financial sanctions put in place by the United States and European Union.
A debt of that size would equate to roughly four large tanker loads of Iranian crude or about 8 million barrels.
Shell asked the U.K. government for help in settling its account with Iran and was rebuffed, Reuters said.
“It’s very sensitive and very difficult. They want to stay on good terms with Iran, while abiding by sanctions.”
A Shell spokesman declined to comment.
Shell is ranked Iran’s second biggest corporate client with daily volumes of 100,000 barrels, and on March 7th said it would take no more deliveries “within a matter of weeks.”
Shell has no upstream or downstream operations in Iran, but in 2002 signed an initial agreement with NIOC, along with Spain’s Repsol, for the development of phases 13 and 14 of the South Pars field.