Tehran, Ashgabat explore avenues of transport, energy co-op

January 10, 2022
oil and gas

TEHRAN – Iranian Transport and Urban Development Minister Rostam Qasemi met with Deputy Chairman of Turkmenistan’s Cabinet of Ministers Serdar Berdymukhamedov in Tehran on Saturday to exchange views and discuss mutual cooperation in various transportation sectors.

Speaking in this meeting, Qasemi mentioned the agreements reached between the two sides during the two countries’ Joint Economic Committee meeting, saying: “At the meeting of the Joint Committee, we reached agreements in the fields of transportation and transit between the two countries that had good results; In this regard, in the field of rail transport, we agreed on the daily exchange of 400 freight wagons at Sarakhs border.”

Qasemi stated that this agreement has made good progress, adding: “We can increase this exchange rate as well.”

The official informed Berdymukhamedov about some problems in the border terminals of Iran and Turkmenistan and suggested: “A joint team of Iranian and Turkmen railway experts can be formed to examine the existing obstacles in the way of realizing the daily exchange of 400 to 500 wagons, and to prepare a comprehensive report and resolve such problems.”

He further suggested that the heads of the two countries' railways hold talks on issues related to Sarakhs and Incheh Boroun terminals, saying: 'We are confident we can expand trade [at these borders].'

Mentioning Turkmenistan's transit of goods to India and southern countries through Iran, Qasemi said: 'I think it will have very good economic effects for both countries.'

According to Qasemi, the connection of the two countries' railways and rail transit can bring billions of dollars a year to Iran and Turkmenistan and have many benefits.

He said that Iran and Turkmenistan can expand their cooperation far beyond the current level, adding: “Strengthening the rail transportation system in Iran and Turkmenistan as a safe and cheap route, can have great benefits for the two countries.”

Further in the meeting, Berdymukhamedov referred to the good relations between Iran and Turkmenistan in various fields and noted that these relations have been strengthened based on various documents signed at the governmental level and between the ministries of the two countries.

He underlined the determination of the two countries’ authorities for the expansion of ties in various areas, saying: “Despite the problems in 2021, we saw an 84-percent increase in the volume of trade between Iran and Turkmenistan compared to 2020.”

Iran ready to swap 40 mcm/d of Turkmenistan’s gas

During his visit to Tehran, Berdymukhamedov also met with Iranian Oil Minister Javad Oji to discuss the expansion of energy cooperation between the two neighbors.

In this meeting, Oji noted that Iran is ready to swap 40 million cubic meters of gas per day (mcm/d) or 10 to 15 billion cubic meters per year.

He mentioned the implementation of a gas swap deal with Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan as of this month, saying: “Our colleagues at the Sarakhs metering station in Turkmenistan border are monitoring the implementation of the swap deal which is begun with four to five million cubic meters per day, or 1.5 to 2 billion cubic meters per year.”

The tripartite gas swap agreement was signed on November 28, 2021 in Turkmenistan’s capital Ashgabat on the sidelines of the 15th Summit of the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO).

Under the agreement, natural gas will be transported from Turkmenistan to Azerbaijan through Iran.


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