France’s Total is in talks with Algiers over upstream gas projects and a petrochemicals plant, according to the firm’s chairman and CEO, Patrick Pouyanné. “We are discussing with them… gas development projects in direct negotiation,” as well as an unspecified “petrochemical project,” said Mr Pouyanné in the firm’s Q4 and FY2017 results earnings call on 8 February.

Total has enjoyed an up and down relationship with Algiers over the past decade. In 2007 it agreed a headline deal for a grassroots petrochemicals plant that was never built, and five years later it signed up to develop a major gas field only for Algerian state energy firm Sonatrach to decide to develop the field on its own. It was only in April last year that Total and Sonatrach signed a deal ending legal action brought by the French firm against Sonatrach in 2016 for changes made 10 years earlier to profit-sharing terms on its oil and gas contracts in the country (MEES, 21 April 2017). (CONTINUED - 701 WORDS)