Iran has said a Turkish private company is expected to sign a gas deal that will result in importing four million cubic meters (cbm) of gas to Turkey a day at a time the United States has stepped up its efforts to put companies on a sanctions list that trades with Iranian government.
Iranian Deputy Oil Minister Javad Oji said Iran will deliver three to four million cbm of gas to the Turkish company a day and that "the deal is different from the current exports agreement" of supplying Turkey with 25 to 30 million cbm of gas, Iran’s state-run Press TV reported on Monday.
Without mentioning the name of the Turkish company, Oji said the Turkish firm needs the Iranian natural gas to convert it into liquefied natural gas (LNG) for supplying the Turkish market.
The Iranian officials said the gas deal will be signed this year. According to the report, in January, the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) announced that Iran exported 8.25 billion cubic meters of gas to Turkey via pipeline in 2010.
Turkey, a close US ally that has an over 400 kilometers-long border with Iran, voted against the latest round of UN sanctions against the Islamic Republic in June after its joint efforts with Brazil to convince the West to seek a diplomatic solution to Iran’s nuclear program failed. Despite its disapproval of the sanctions, Turkey pledged to remain loyal to the decision taken by 12 votes in favor in the 15-member UN Security Council (UNSC).
Turkish exports accounted for slightly more than 3 percent of the Islamic Republic’s imports, while natural gas imported from Iran made up 80 percent of Turkey’s Iranian imports last year.