The gas field of Rhum, 200 miles off the coast of Scotland, is jointly owned by BP and an Iranian state-owned oil company. (This was news to FT Westminster). It could be the casualty of new sanctions by EU foreign ministers against Iran’s energy sector imposed in an attempt to bring the republic back to the negotiating table over its uranium enrichment activities.
A spokeswoman for the EU told Dow jones that it was “possible” the field could be shut down although it was not a “foregone conclusion”.
I was told by a Foreign Office official earlier today that the British government was – in effect – staying out of the row: “It’s for BP to decide how to adapt its activities to ensure compliance with the regulation,” she said.
BP is meanwhile “studying the impact of the new legislation”. It has a 50 per cent stake in the field, as does Iranian Oil Company, which is indirectly owned by National Iranian Oil co.