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In December, Iran expects to sign an energy agreement with Russian gas giant Gazprom worth around $40 billion, a senior Iranian diplomat was quoted as saying on Wednesday.
“We have concluded an agreement worth about $6.5 billion with Gazprom. We hope that the remaining agreements totaling to $40 billion will be signed next month. The negotiations are currently ongoing,” said Mahdi Safari, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Economic Diplomacy, as quoted by the ISNA news agency of Iran.
The agreement comes as Russia and Iran are expanding bilateral cooperation and energy and trade ties, united by a common goal of using each other to offset Western sanctions.
Earlier this week, Russia and Iran agreed to sign a free trade agreement with the Eurasian Economic Union, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said on Tuesday.
“We have also agreed to remove all barriers that exist today on the way of developing bilateral trade. And we are talking about reducing barriers at the borders with third countries. We have agreed to conclude an agreement on a free trade zone between Iran and the Eurasian Economic Union in the near future,” Novak said at a Russia-Iran forum.
Also on Tuesday, Novak said that Russia had started deliveries of oil products to Iran under swap deals. Russian-Iranian relations - both economically and geopolitically - are of strategic nature, Novak added.
Iran’s Petroleum Minister Javad Owji said at the bilateral forum that the public and private sectors in both countries are looking to “neutralize the sanctions.”
“There is now a strong will in the public and private sectors of both countries to neutralize the sanctions,” Owji was quoted as saying by the oil ministry’s news service Shana.
Russia’s Novak, for his part, said that “The amount of Russian investment in Iran’s oil fields will increase.”
By Michael Kern for Oilprice.com
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Michael Kern is a newswriter and editor at Safehaven.com and Oilprice.com,