Iran strikes gas accords: consolidates deal with Asia & Europe
According to FNA sources, the deal with the European state will include export of 20 to 25 million cubic meters of gas supplies. Iran is now exporting gas to Turkey and has swap deals with Armenia and Azerbaijan.
In addition to a multi-billion-dollar gas pipeline which is due to take Iran's rich reserves to the energy hungry Pakistan, Tehran is also having negotiations on new deals for gas exports to Switzerland, Iraq and Syria. Iran, which sits on the world's second largest reserves of both oil and gas, is facing western sanctions over its civilian nuclear program.
Iranian officials have dismissed the sanctions as inefficient, saying that they are finding Asian partners instead. A large number of Chinese, Indian and other Asian firms have negotiated or signed up to oil and gas deals with Iran. In a recent case, Iran signed gas deals worth $14 billion with Malaysia's SKS Group, which included a contract to build an LNG plant.
Some European states have also voiced interest in investment in Iran's energy sector after a gas deal was signed between Iran and Switzerland four years ago regardless of the US sanctions.
The National Iranian Gas Export Company and Switzerland's Elektrizitaetsgesellschaft Laufenburg signed a 25-year deal in March 2008 for the delivery of 5.5 billion cubic meters of gas per year.
The biggest recent deal, worth €100mln ($147mln, £80mln), was signed by Steiner Prematechnik Gastec, the German engineering company, in 2009 to build equipment for three gas conversion plants in Iran.