Baku, Azerbaijan, Nov. 1
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
Iran is ready to sign its first oil industry deal once sanctions are lifted, said Amir Hossein Zamaninia, the country's deputy oil minister.
He was speaking on the sidelines of a meeting with British Minister of State for Trade and Investment Francis Maude, who is in Tehran on an official visit.
The two sides discussed oil and gas cooperation, the Iranian oil ministry's official news agency, SHANA, reported on Nov. 1.
The UK is interested in long-term cooperation with Iran once the sanctions are lifted, Zamaninia said.
"They have accepted Iran's conditions, including technology transfers, investments and partnerships with Iranian companies," he said.
The Iranian minister referred to the development of Iran's joint oil fields and their increasing efficiencies as areas in which the UK companies are seeking cooperation with Tehran.
They are also keen to participate in Iran's LNG projects, Zamaninia added.
He further said that representatives from the UK companies will visit Tehran in the next two weeks to discuss cooperation details.
Britain wants to finalize the groundwork for establishing its presence in Iran in the run-up to the removal of sanctions, in order to sign the cooperation agreement immediately thereafter, Zamaninia added.
He stressed that sanctions will be removed in less than two months.
Representatives of British Petroleum, OTC, Petrofac and some energy managers are accompanying the British minister on his visit.
Maude said that companies traveling with him are planning to make long-term investments in Iran and they need to be assured that there are reliable mechanisms to guarantee their investments.
The UK minister is scheduled to meet President Hassan Rouhani and a number of his ministers during his two-day visit.
This is the second British trade delegation to visit Iran in less than a month. The first was headed by the former British ambassador to Tehran, Richard Dalton.
Iran has said it is interested in rebuilding economic relations with other countries and is encouraging foreign investment in its industries and infrastructure.
An increasing number of foreign ministers and trade delegations from other countries have been traveling to Iran since the Islamic Republic and the P5+1 (the US, Russia, China, France, the UK, and Germany) announced a final accord last July, after several months of talks to curb Iran's nuclear program, in exchange for lifting most international sanctions.
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