File photo shows an Iranian gas production facility in South Pars region.
Managing Director of the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) says the Islamic Republic is ready to export natural gas to Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.
“Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan have stressed on the need to import natural gas from Iran,” Mehr News Agency quoted Javad Owji as saying on Saturday.
He added that the negotiations with the two Asian countries over the gas import deals will begin soon.
On Wednesday, April 11, Iranian Ambassador to Tajikistan Ali Asghar Sherdoust told Trend News Agency that the Islamic Republic is planning to export gas to Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and China via a new pipeline.
"According to the agreement reached by the officials of Tajikistan, Iran and Afghanistan in Dushanbe, a pipeline will be built running from Iran to Tajikistan through Afghanistan and further to Kyrgyzstan and China," he added.
The Iranian diplomat further stated that during the fifth trilateral summit of the presidents of Iran, Afghanistan, and Tajikistan in Dushanbe on March 25, 2012, they signed agreements on the establishment of connecting routes and the exchange of oil, gas and water.
He added that Tajikistan’s President Emomali Rahmon has asked Iran to help his country with the dire conditions which have been caused by natural gas shortage in Tajikistan.
Tajikistan and Uzbekistan signed a gas deal in 2011 according to which the latter country was supposed to export 180 million cubic meters of natural gas to Tajikistan, but only exported 160 million cubic meters.
Uzbekistan, which is the sole supplier of natural gas to Tajikistan, stopped exporting gas to its southeastern neighbor last April to meet China’s growing gas demand.
In addition to Iran, Tajikistan has also been negotiating with Turkmens to purchase natural gas from Turkmenistan.