Turkmen gas flow to Iran drops five times in last two years

Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 26

By Dalga Khatinoglu - Trend:

Turkmenistan significantly decreased gas export to Iran.

Iran received some 1.2 billion cubic meters of Turkmen gas in the first half of Iranian solar year, which started on March 20, according to a new report published by Mehr News Agency, which cited Iranian Oil Ministry's statistics.

The figure indicates over two times and about five times decrease compared to the same periods in last solar year and a year before that.

Iran imported 11.8 billion cubic meters (bcm) of Turkmen gas between March 20, 2011 and March 20, 2012, whereas between March 20, 2012 and March 20, 2013 this figure decreased to 4.4 bcm.

Iran said its six-month gas import from Turkmenistan stood at only 1.2 bcm.

Turkmenistan has not announced officially about the reason of cuts in gas delivery to Iran, but Iranian officials say there are "technical problems".

Mehr News Agency reported in September 2012 that, Iran's debts to Turkmenistan exceeded $1 bln due to payment problems caused by western sanctions on Iran's banking system.

Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov said on Dec.19, 2013 that a gas compressor station has been opened at the Keimir field in the western Balkan region of Turkmenistan, where natural gas will be supplied to the Turkmenistan-Iran gas main line.

"This gas compressor station is designed to pump one billion cubic meters of natural gas to the gathering point at the Keimir field," Berdimuhamedov said. "Then it will be supplied from the complex of stations at the Akpatlavuk field to the Turkmenistan-Iran gas main line."

The supply of Turkmen gas to Iran began in 1995 after the commissioning of the Korpeje-Gurtguyy pipeline. The two neighboring countries opened additional capacities along the Dovletabad-Serakhs route in 2009.

A related branch over the territory of Iran from Serakhs to Sangbast through Hangeran was opened in November 2010.

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