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EghtesadOnline: Russia’s Gazprom Neft and Austrian player OMV have inked a cooperation document to develop upstream oil and gas projects of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Russia's Gazprom Neft and Austria's OMV will work together in Iran's oil sector under a memorandum of understanding, Norwegian Upstream news outlet quoted a statement by OMV on Friday.

'Preliminary possible spheres of cooperation include analysis, assessment and study of certain oil deposits located in the territory of the Islamic Republic of Iran in cooperation with the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC),' OMV said.

According to Reuters, OMV could help Gazprom Neft in the initial geological assessment of two blocks in Iran, Vadim Yakovlev, first deputy general director at Gazprom Neft said in the statement.

He noted that the Middle East is one of the priority regions in the long-term development strategy of Gazprom Neft. 

OMV Executive Board Member for Upstream Johann Pleininger said in the meantime that cooperation with Russia in the Middle East is consistent with the companies’ upstream strategy. 

OMV started operations in Iran in 2001 as the operator of the Mehr exploration block in the west of the country. It halted operations in 2006 due to sanctions imposed on Iran.

Following sanctions relief granted last year as a result of a nuclear deal Iran reached with world powers, OMV signed a memorandum with the NIOC for projects located in the Zagros area in western Iran and the Fars field in the south, where foreign companies often need a local partner to operate.

In January, OMV, which has singled out Russia, the United Arab Emirates and Iran as growth areas, signed an agreement with Tehran-based Dana Energy on the development of oil and gas fields.

OMV Iran oil projects Iran gas projects Gazprom Neft