Media reports that ExxonMobil is lobbying the U.S. government on Iran sanctions are inaccurate, says the company in a statement.
“ExxonMobil is not lobbying on Iran sanctions,” said Ken Cohen, vice president of Public and Government Affairs. “Erroneous media reports resulted from errors in a consultant’s lobbying disclosures. Current U.S. law prohibits American companies from operating in Iran.”
The U.S. and other nations have been struggling to reach an agreement on nuclear technology development with Iran for months and have set a June 30 deadline for negotiations. If an agreement is reached, it could mean sanctions are lifted, leaving oil companies such as ExxonMobil free to pursue oil interests in the country.
The announcement from ExxonMobil follows a media report stating the company is ramping up efforts to track U.S. government work on Iranian sanctions. The report goes on to balance any claims relating to lobbying by reporting: “We are not lobbying on Iran sanctions,” Alan Jeffers, an Exxon spokesman, said during a telephone interview on Thursday. “We are monitoring activities related to Iran in the U.S. government.”
Similar news was covered by several media outlets.
Iran holds the world's fourth-largest proved crude oil reserves and the world's second-largest natural gas reserves. However, despite the country's abundant reserves, Iran's oil production has substantially declined over the past few years, and natural gas production growth has slowed. International sanctions have profoundly affected Iran's energy sector, prompting a number of cancellations or delays of upstream projects, resulting in declining oil production capacity.