EghtesadOnline: Tehran hopes to sign contracts with Russian oil and gas companies in 2018, as there is noticeable progress in its cooperation, particularly with Rosneft and Gazprom, Iran's ambassador to Russia said.
Six large Russian oil and gas companies, including Gazprom Neft, Zarubezhneft and DeNico, have memorandums of understanding and some have already submitted proposals regarding the projects, Mehdi Sanaei was also quoted as saying by Sputnik.
"We hope that this will lead to the signing of contracts in 2018. Companies are exploring the fields, but some companies are closer to signing contracts," he added, noting that Rosneft is making good progress, Gazprom is in serious talks on LNG and Zarubezhneft has signed a preliminary contract, Financial Tribune reported.
According to Sanaei, Gazprom Neft and LUKoil are among Russian companies "working well" with Tehran.
The ambassador said Tehran hopes that an agreement with Gazprom on its participation in Iran's liquefied natural gas project will be concluded in the first half of 2018.
"The Iranian side very much hopes that it will be so. We want the Russian companies to hurry up and sign the relevant contracts," he said, answering the question whether the contract could be signed in the first half of 2018.
Asked about negotiating with Rosneft, Sanaei noted that Iran and the Russian firm are holding talks on having the energy giant join the development of the Islamic Republic's Azar Oilfield.
"Yes, [the talks] are underway," Sanaei told the Rossiya 24 TV channel. Azar Oilfield is being developed by Iran’s Oil Industries Engineering and Construction Company. In 2017, Russia’s Gazprom and OIEC signed a deal allowing the Russian company to develop the Azar and Changuleh oilfields.