Turkey Seeking Closer Gas Ties

Turkey Seeking Closer Gas TiesTurkey Seeking Closer Gas Ties

Turkey wants to buy more natural gas from Iran and has discussed pricing issues, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Friday, adding that Ankara and Tehran should resolve a dispute on gas prices without arbitration.

Cavusoglu made the comment at a joint news conference with his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Javad Zarif, in Ankara. Zarif is on an official visit to Turkey, Reuters reported.

 Iran signed a contract in 1996 to export 10 billion cubic meters of gas per year to Turkey for 25 years. Turkey’s state-owned oil company Botas complained to the International Court of Arbitration regarding the price and volume of Iranian gas in March 2012.

"ICA ruled that Iran supplied gas to Turkey at a higher price compared to other regional producers because of which it was sentenced to pay 13-16% of the exported gas price since 2011 as compensation, " Hamidreza Araqi, managing director of the National Iranian Gas Company, said.

He added that as the two sides have failed to agree on the amount of compensation which stands at approximately $1 billion, ICA will settle the lingering gas dispute in the near future.

Araqi believes that ICA's final decision will definitely overshadow NIGC's future negotiations with not only Turkey but also all potential customers interested in purchasing natural gas from Iran.