The Iranian Oil Ministry has issued a statement saying that it would welcome any offer for foreign investment in its oil and gas projects.
The unexpected statement issued late on Sunday comes days after a senior Saudi Arabian official said his country would be ready for “quick investment” in Iranian development projects.
Without naming any country or company, the Oil Ministry said any offer for investment in Iranian oil and gas projects, especially from members of the OPEC+ alliance of oil producing nations, would be welcome in Tehran.
It said any such investment would benefit the global energy security as Iran is a leading holder of oil and gas reserves in the world.
Saudi Arabia is the largest oil exporter in the world and a leading member in the OPEC+ grouping which consists of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and allies like Russia.
Iran is the third largest natural gas producer in the world and still a key supplier of crude oil to Asian markets despite being subject to sanctions imposed by the US since 2018.
Political authorities from Iran and Saudi Arabia announced earlier this month in the Chinese capital Beijing that the two countries will restore their diplomatic relations by reopening embassies that had been closed in 2016.