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                                        Volume. 11987

Russian energy minister upbeat on Tehran-Moscow trade talks
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MOSCOW (RIA Novosti) – Russia and Iran have made progress on jointly discussing cooperation during the International Energy Forum in Moscow, but failed to reach a deal to expand trade and economic ties and a potential oil-for-goods swap, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said Friday.
 
“There have been no final agreements. We hope [to reach the agreements] by the next session of the intergovernmental commission in autumn. The process is underway, so far we have had no task to agree today, but progress has been made,” Novak told reporters.
 
Novak held talks with Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh on Thursday and the pair were expected to discuss boosting trade and economic cooperation, including supplies of Russian goods and services and also the participation of Russian companies in joint projects in Russia and Iran, Novak said Thursday.
 
The talks focused on particular projects, including in oil and gas extraction.
Last month, Novak said at a RIA Novosti press conference that Iran had proposed postponing the meeting of the intergovernmental commission from summer to September.
 
The Russian minister said Iran is currently developing tools for mutual payments for equipment allowing increasing bilateral trade, which is still affected by the continuing sanctions against Tehran.
 
Reuters reported in mid-January that Russia and Iran are discussing a deal to swap about 500,000 barrels of Iranian oil for Russian goods and equipment, and plan to sign it soon. The agency later said the deal could be worth $20 billion.

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