india has to act fast on oil gas imports from iran
Last Updated : GMT 04:22:55
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

India has to act fast on oil, gas imports from Iran

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today India has to act fast on oil, gas imports from Iran

New Delhi - Irna

Iran\'s Ambassador to India Mehdi Nabizadeh, said Tehran-New Delhi bilateral ties are not only based on regional issues, adding energy is an important component for development. Both countries have to work together, the Iranian envoy added. India-Iran trade ties are feeling the strain of Western influence, he said, noting this may disrupt crude imports from Iran. Imports dropped to 18.5 million tons last fiscal year from 21m tons in the previous year. Nabizadeh said energy (oil and gas) is an important component and India should take certain decisions before it is too late. He reiteratred that there are certain ambiguities between the two countries regarding some international issues. Expressing his satisfaction with the current level of economic cooperation between the two nations, he said, bilateral trade has reached $14.9 billion from $9 billion in the last four years. However, it declined to $13.3 billion last year, he added. The banking and financial system plays a big role in economic relations, the envoy said, regretting that there has been some difficulties with India in the banking area in the past one year. \'Till last year, we had a very good transaction mechanism with India through ACU (Asian Clearing Union). Unfortunately, ACU has stopped conducting transactions. This has not only affected Iran-India ties, but all the member countries of the ACU. We have tried very hard to find ways for transfer of money (clear the oil import debt which Indian refiners owe to suppliers in Iran), he said. Three or four months ago, the last transaction was done through a German bank which was stopped under Western influence, Nabizadeh said, adding, now, we are following up the case through some other countries. A month ago, there was a meeting of the officials of the Reserve Bank of India and the Central Bank of Iran. It was decided that a joint group of these banks would work out a special mechanism. Negotiations are under way, so Iran may not have any problem in exporting oil to India, he noted. Turning to the LNG exports (7.5 mtpa deal) Nabizadeh said that this has become an old issue. An agreement was supposed to be approved by the National Iranian Oil Company, which did not happen, he added. \'Though this issue is closed, we are discussing investments in South Pars phase 12. We want to supply gas. However, India should not lose the opportunity. We are talking to other countries, too. Once the opportunity is missed, we cannot supply, even if we want.\' On Iran-Pakistan-India gas (IPI) pipeline project, Iranian ambassador said, \'we were having good negotiations, but, suddenly they stopped\'. The excuse given was security concerns, he said, adding, but India is going ahead with the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline project. India should take certain decisions seriously, the envoy concluded.

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