Iran's media says the country has suspended a $2.6 billion gas project with a Chinese consortium over a funding dispute.

The semiofficial Mehr agency on Sunday quotes an unnamed official as saying the consortium failed to provide financing for a liquid natural gas plant more than three years after it signed an agreement to build it.

The report did not identify the Chinese firms' names, although the media previously identified the group as SINOC.

It said the facility was to be built within 41 months. The official said the Chinese partner could resume its job after it provided the financing.

Iran has turned to Chinese firms for its oil and gas projects in recent years, as the country has faced tightening international sanctions because of its disputed nuclear program.