Iran, Tehran, Dec.14 / Trend I.Saltanatpur /
Azerbaijan and Iran have agreed to expand cooperation in gas sphere. This was sated at a news conference following talks between Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov and his Iranian Counterpart Manouchehr Mottaki that took place as a part of Mammadyarov's visit to Iran, Trend special correspondent reported from Tehran.
"During the meeting, we have discussed issues of cooperation between the two countries in the gas sphere," Mammadyarov said. "Heads of energy agencies will soon implement these agreements."
SOCAR and the Iranian National Gas Company are expected to sign a contract on Azerbaijani gas deliveries following the ongoing talks.
From the beginning of next year Azerbaijani gas will be delivered to Iran on definite volumes, which existing infrastructure of the two countries allow.
Currently, the infrastructure allows delivering about 500 million cubic meters of gas per year. In the future, the parties intend to expand capacity by increasing the capacity of gas compressor stations. The gas price has not been specified.
Iran intends to purchase about 5 billion cubic meters of gas from Azerbaijan, Iranian Ambassador to Azerbaijan Mohammad Bagir Behrami said earlier.
Azerbaijan has four directions of gas export, including Turkey, Georgia, Russia and Iran. At present, gas is exported to Turkey and Georgia. Azerbaijani gas will be exported to Russia from early 2010. At present, Azerbaijan exports gas upon swap conditions with further transfer of Iranian gas to provide the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic.
Azerbaijan and Iran are connected with the Kazi-Magomed-Astara pipeline gas pipeline. Its length is 1474.5 kilometers, including the territory of Azerbaijan - 296.5 kilometers. Its capacity is 10 billion cubic meters per year.
This route is a branch of the pipeline Gazakh-Astara-Iran, put into operation in 1971. Three compressor stations in Kazi-Magomed, Agdash and Gazakh have been built. The gas transportation system is 55 atmospheres. Pipe diameter is 1,200 mm.
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