Iran’s Rouhani to visit Turkey in May

Photo: Iran’s Rouhani to visit Turkey in May / Turkey

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani is expected to visit Turkey late in May or early June, as the discussions on scheduling are still underway through diplomatic channels, diplomatic sources told Hurriyet Daily News.

Ankara and Tehran aim to conclude the ongoing talks on energy, aiming to reduce the prices of Iranian gas imported by Turkey in return for increasing the amount of natural gas purchased. The two countries are also expected to sign several agreements on politics, economy and culture at a high level cooperation council meeting.

"Turkish and Iranian officials have continued discussions on the issue since the last visit of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to Tehran, and we would like to finalize it through a high level cooperation council meeting," said the sources.

Turkey could double the amount of natural gas it imports from Iran if the two countries reach an agreement on the price, Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yıldız said in January.

Ankara deems Iranian gas too expensive compared with other suppliers like Russia and Azerbaijan, but the demand has been rejected by Tehran so far. Turkey's state-owned Petroleum Pipeline Corporation (BOTAŞ) applied to an international court of arbitration in 2012 for a ruling on Iran's gas pricing and the case is still pending.

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