Gas export deals to see drastic changes after pandemic: Iran

Press TV – Iranian authorities say conditions governing its long-term contracts for exports of natural gas should change to adapt to a market that has been affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

“Conditions governing long-term gas contracts would probably undergo essential changes after corona (virus),” said Hossein Montazer Torbati, an Iranian Deputy Oil Minister who heads the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC).

The comments come after reports in recent days suggested that Turkey, a main customer of Iran’s natural gas, is unwilling to repair a pipeline damaged in an explosion in late March as it seeks lower prices in the light of a recent fall in international crude prices.

Gas export deals designate oil prices as a benchmark for determining gas prices although any price change would need at least six months to take effect.

Montazer told the semi-official ILNA news agency that Iran would introduce new pricing mechanisms in gas export deals in future, without elaborating on how they would work.

He said Iran would also start negotiating with Turkey about an extension to the current gas export deal beyond 2025.

The NIGC chief said Iran would always remain a reliable supplier of natural gas to Turkey despite changes that are taking place in the country’s energy market where the government is allowing more activity for the private-sector suppliers.

On Iran’s plans for gas exports to new regions and countries, Torbati said Tehran is studying plans to deliver gas to areas bordering Iran in the semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan in neighboring Iraq.

The official said authorities in the Iraqi Kurdistan have submitted several requests for start of gas supply from Iran to the bordering regions.

He also said that the Iranian Oil Ministry’s department for international affairs is currently working on a contract for launching gas exports to Oman.