Canadian Manufacturing

China signs $700 oil and natural gas exploration deal with Afghanistan

Deal allows China’s National Petroleum Corp. to work oil blocks in northeastern provinces of Sari Pul and Faryab

December 30, 2011  by The Canadian Press

KABUL, Afghanistan—Afghanistan’s government has signed a deal with China’s state-owned National Petroleum Corp. to exploit oil and natural gas.

It’s the first of several such blocks to be put on the market in coming months.

Afghan Minister of Mines Wahidullah Shahrani says the project is worth $700 million. But the total value could be ten times that if more reserves are found and developed, and if international oil prices remain at today’s levels.

It allows the Chinese firm to work oil blocks in the northeastern provinces of Sari Pul and Faryab. The area, known as the Amu Darya River Basin, was first explored by Soviet engineers in the 1960s.