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Sinopec (SEI)






Date: January 2001 – 2008

Deal: According to a Chinese news report, Sinopec signed an agreement with the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) in January 2001 to jointly explore Iran's Zavareh-Kanshan oil field. Sinopec will operate the project (AsiaPort, January 23, 2001).

According to Global Insight, exploration continued through 2008, at which time no hydrocarbon resources had been found (Global Insight, March 5, 2009).

Date: October 2004 – Ongoing

Deal: According to AFX News, China and Iran signed a Memorandum of Understanding in October 2004. Sinopec agreed to develop the Yadavaran oil field in exchange for buying 10 million tons of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Iran for 25 years (AFX News Limited, June 20, 2006). Sinopec formally signed the deal in December 2007 to drill in the Yadavaran oil field, which is estimated to hold 17 billion barrels in reserves, according to Time magazine (Time, July 16, 2009).

According to USA Today, "the Yadavaran deal calls for the Chinese company to invest in developing the oilfield in two phases, with the first phase to produce 85,000 barrels per day to be carried out in four years. The second phase, to produce an additional 100,000 barrels per day, is to be completed in another three years" (USA Today, December 10, 2007). A U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) report states that the deal was worth about $2 billion (GAO Report, March 23, 2010).

Days after the Yadavaran contract was signed, Sinopec also agreed to purchase 160,000 barrels of Iranian crude oil per day in 2008, nearly tripling its intake of Iranian oil, according to Reuters, (Reuters, December 13, 2007).

The Tehran Times reported in September 2008 that Sinopec began its operation at the Yadavaran field. (Tehran Times, September 18, 2008).

According to The Wall Street Journal, Sinopec had doubled its production at the Yadvaran oil project in June 2014. Production increased from about 20,000 bpd to 50,000 bpd (The Wall Street Journal, June 10, 2014).

Date: 2006 – Ongoing

Deal: According to the company's website, Sinopec signed a €108 million ($158 million) contract to partner with the National Iranian Oil Refining & Distribution Company (NIORDC) and other Iranian firms to increase gasoline production at the Tabriz refinery (Sinopec Engineering Website, 2009).

According to NIORDC, the project is set for completion in 2010 (National Iranian Oil Refining & Distribution Company Website, 2009).

Date: June 2006 – Unclear

Deal: According to AFX News, Sinopec signed an agreement with Iran's Oil Exploration and Service Company (OESC) to develop the Garmsar oil block in June 2006 (AFX News Limited, June 20, 2006). The Congressional Research Service lists the deal as being worth $20 million (Congressional Research Service, February 2, 2010).

No other information about this deal is available.

Date: July 2006 – Ongoing

Deal: According to the Middle East Economic Digest, NIORDC signed a $2.7 billion contract with Sinopec in 2006 to increase the capacity of Iran's Arak refinery. The project was set to take four years to complete (Middle East Economic Digest, August 4, 2006).

According to an industry publication, Sinopec is part of a consortium consisting of United Kingdom's UOP, France's Axen, Italy's Technip and Iranian firms Research Institute of Petroleum Industry, Sazeh, and Oil Design & Construction Co. (ODCC). The project is expected to increase the refinery's production from 34,000 bpd to 100,000 bpd. As of November 2008, the project faced 8-9 months of delays (Oil and Gas Journal, November 24, 2008).

NIORDC's website lists the National Iranian Oil Engineering and Construction Company (NIOEC) as the Iranian firm that implemented the contract (NIORC Website, accessed August 25, 2010).

According to the GAO, the contract was worth $2.8 billion and the project will be completed in 2011 (GAO Report, March 23, 2010).

In August 2011, Sinopec Engineering Inc. announced that it had started a unit in the refinery, according to Reuters (Reuters, August 19, 2011).

Date: August 2009 – Ongoing

Deal: According to industry reports, the National Iranian Oil Products Distribution Company (NIOPDC) and Sinopec signed an agreement in August 2009 to expand two Iranian refineries, including the Abadan refinery and one located on the Persian Gulf (SinoCast Daily Business Beat, August 5, 2009). The Congressional Research Service states that the deal is worth "up to $6 billion if [a] new refinery is built" (Congressional Research Service, February 2, 2010).

Date: November 2009 - Unclear

Deal: According to UPI, citing Iran's Mehr News Agency, Sinopec signed a Memorandum of Understanding with NIORDC in November 2009 to invest $6.5 million to help finance oil refineries in Iran. The agreement was expected to be finalized before February 2010 (UPI Energy, November 25, 2009).

No further information is available on this deal.

Date: May 2010

Deal: According to an industry publication, Sinopec and Iran's National Petrochemical Company (NPC) were set to sign a Memorandum of Understanding in May 2010 to explore joint venture opportunities in the petrochemical industry in both countries. An unnamed source claimed that "the MOU should be signed within the next one to two months" (Chemical News and Intelligence, May 28, 2010).

Reuters reported in July 2010 that Sinopec's engineering arm, SEI, had "entered energy infrastructure contracts in Iran and Saudi Arabia" (Reuters, July 14, 2010).

U.S. Business Ties: Sinopec has not received any federal contracts between 2000 and 2009, according to (, accessed July 21, 2010).

According to the company's filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for 2009, Sinopec has a subsidiary in the U.S., Sinopec-USA Co. Ltd., headquartered in New York City (Sinopec Website, accessed July 22, 2010).

According to the New York Stock Exchange Website, Sinopec subsidiary Sinopec Shanghai Petrochemical Company Limited has been listed on the New York Stock Exchange since July of 1993 (New York Stock Exchange Website, accessed July 12, 2010).

The New York Times reported that the U.S. Trade and Development Agency gave Sinopec a $429,000 grant in 2002 "to help an import-export subsidiary to develop an electronic procurement system" (The New York Times, February 25, 2005).

In March 2007, the Fujian Petrochemical Company, a subsidiary of Sinopec, inaugurated a joint venture with Exxon Mobil and Saudi Aramco creating the Fujian Refining & Ethylene Joint Venture Project and the Fujian Fuels Marketing Joint Venture in China, according to Exxon Mobil's website (Exxon Mobil Chemical Website, March 30, 2007).

In July 2009, U.S.-based Marathon Oil announced in a press release an agreement with Sinopec and the China National Offshore Oil Company (CNOOC) through its subsidiary, Marathon International Petroleum Angola Block 32 Limited, to explore and develop the offshore block in Angola (Marathon Oil Press Release, July 17, 2009).

In March 2010, the Chinese press announced that Sinopec was considering cooperating with ExxonMobil and Saudi Aramco to build an oil refinery in Fujian. The refinery would be able to process 12 million tons of crude oil per year. The three companies are currently conducting a feasibility study on the project (People's Daily Online, March 9, 2010).

According to, Sinopec has not received any contracts from the United States government (, accessed August 19, 2014).

Last Updated: August 19, 2014