AFP: Spain's leading energy group Repsol YPF has signed a 27-million-dollar (21.6-million-euro) deal with Iran to obtain prospection rights in two fields over the next 30 months, the financial newspaper Expansion reported on Monday. A Repsol YPF statement confirmed the firm would prospect at Mehr and Foruz, near Kish Island off the port of Bushir in the southern Persian Gulf, with the total project covering 14,600 square kilometres (5,000 square miles). AFP

MADRID - Spain's leading energy group Repsol YPF has signed a 27-million-dollar (21.6-million-euro) deal with Iran to obtain prospection rights in two fields over the next 30 months, the financial newspaper Expansion reported on Monday.

A Repsol YPF statement confirmed the firm would prospect at Mehr and Foruz, near Kish Island off the port of Bushir in the southern Persian Gulf, with the total project covering 14,600 square kilometres (5,000 square miles).

Repsol, which is already present in the region with operations in Dubai and Saudi Arabia, also confirmed Expansion's report that the contract could be extended by one year depending on how the prospection turns out.

Last month, Repsol YPF and Anglo-Dutch giant Shell signed a framework deal with Iranian state company National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) to extract liquified natural gas in Iran.

According to the newspaper El Pais that deal is worth 3.25 billion euros (4.0 billion dollars) but the companies did not confirm the figure for the deal, which is due to come on stream in 2010 with annual production of seven million tonnes as well as one million tonnes of liquefied gas petroleum.