FRANKFURT Feb 24 BASF said it was in
talks with Iran over a possible investment of its oil and gas
division in the country but no decision was on the cards because
of uncertainty over the status of economic sanctions.
"We can't see that the lifting of sanctions is being
implemented at the speed that was initially expected," BASF
Chief Executive Kurt Bock told a news conference after the
release of 2016 earnings.
"We are trying to assess whether it's possible for our oil
and gas business to gain a foothold in Iran. We have been
invited by the national authorities. The evaluation process is
ongoing," he said, adding the outcome was uncertain.
He specified that such talks were limited to investments in
oil and gas exploration and production and did not extend to
downstream petrochemical processing plants.
The CEO also said he still saw no necessity for the
chemicals group overall to pursue any "transformational"
takeover deals, even as peers Bayer and Monsanto
as well as Dow and DuPont are merging.
(Reporting by Ludwig Burger; Editing by Maria Sheahan)