Photo showing the declining state of Iran's oil infrastructure

Iran Says Ready To Cooperate With Saudi To Develop Oil Fields

Saturday, 03/16/2024

Mohsen Khojasteh-Mehr, the CEO of the National Iranian Oil Company, has said Tehran would welcome any cooperation with Riyadh for “integrated development,” including in the oil and gas sectors.

Over the past two decades, Iran has significantly lagged behind Saudi Arabia in energy sector investments, with an annual infusion of a few billion dollars compared with Saudi investments to the tune of tens of billion of dollars.

Tehran is also in a dispute with Saudi Arabia and Kuwait over an oil and gas field field in the Persian Gulf called Arash by Iran and Durra or Dorra by its two Arab neighbors, who have begun operations to develop the underwater field.

Kuwaits insists the field is only shared with Saudi Arabia despite Iran’s claims. Back in July, Saudi state news agency SPA, citing the foreign ministry, said the kingdom enjoys “full rights” along with Kuwait to the disputed gas and oil field.

Following sanctions against Tehran over its nuclear program, international companies refused to continue to work with Iran in developing its oil and gas fields. Since then, Iran has sought the cooperation of its few allies, including Russia, to further its oil fields projects.

While Iran proudly announced the signing of the "largest oil and gas agreements in the country's history worth $40 billion," Russia has not converted any of these memoranda of understanding (MoU) into contracts.

Khojasteh-Mehr also noted that the negotiations between Iran and Pakistan are underway regarding the export of Iranian gas to its eastern neighbor. “The will of the two countries is to implement this project,” he stressed.

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