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Iran, Ukraine, Armenia, Georgia and Russia may meet in September
Deputy Oil Minister for International Affairs Seyyed Mohammad Hadi Nezhadhoseynian said here Tuesday [16 August] hoped that the five-partite meeting of Iran, Ukraine, Armenia, Georgia and Russia on export of gas from Iran to Europe via Ukraine will be held by September. He told IRNA that Russia's approval of the project will expedite the process.
Stressing that the Europeans are in dire need of Iran's gas, he added that guarantee for future supply of energy is of great importance to Europe and that they are both interested in and need to import gas from Iran.
"Given that China, India and Pakistan are among Iran's gas clients and keen to bolster relations with the country, if other consumers of gas do not proceed in time they may face a shortage of gas available for export. Turkey is currently the only importer of gas from Iran and transfer of gas to Europe via this country is one of the options on the agenda.
Turkey's recent reaction to the issue and its intention to purchase gas from Iran and sell it to Europe directly, is not acceptable to Iran, since another option would be to transfer it via Ukraine," he added.
Nezhadhoseynian noted that Turkey cannot insist on following such a procedure in order to become a member of European Union, since it is not supported by EU.
Concerning export of gas from Iran to Europe via Ukraine it should be said that a cooperation agreement has recently been inked to the effect between the two states, but that the volume of the gas to be transferred via this route has not been distinguished yet.
Ukraine has proposed two pipeline routes to Iran for transfer of gas: one is Iran-Armenia-Georgia-Russia-Ukraine-Europe and the other is Iran-Armenia-Georgia-Black Sea-Ukraine-Europe. The expenses of each of the two suggested routes have been assessed by Ukrainian sources at 10 billion dollars.