TEHRAN – Head of the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) Dispatching Department Mohammadreza Jolaei said Iran has resumed gas exports to neighboring Turkey following the resolving of some technical issues in the export pipelines.
According to the official, Iran's gas exports to Turkey had been halted for eight days since Monday, October 2 to carry out periodical repairs by both countries in accordance with a previous agreement, Shana reported.
Gas flow resumed on Monday, October 10 at 10:10 AM Tehran Local Time, after the completion of the repairs, the official said.
Iran is Turkey's second-biggest supplier of natural gas after Russia. Tehran sells about 10 billion cubic meters a year of gas under a 25-year supply deal to Turkey which it uses for electricity generation.
The gas exports are carried out via a 2,577 km (1,601 miles) pipeline running from Tabriz to Ankara.
After the re-imposition of U.S. sanctions in November 2018, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan made it clear that his country would continue to buy natural gas from the Islamic Republic.
Natural gas exports from Iran to Turkey had also come to a halt on March 31, 2020, after an explosion and fire at a pipeline on the Turkish side of the border; the reasons for the blast were not officially announced.
Iran resumed gas exports to Turkey after a three-month hiatus.
Earlier this year, Erdogan announced Turkey’s plans for purchasing more oil and gas from Iran amid greater energy needs and developing ties between the two countries.
Making the remarks in an interview with the state-owned broadcaster, TRT Haber, in late July, Erdogan said: "Turkey will increase its purchases of oil and natural gas from Iran", noting that the trade volume between Ankara and Tehran could reach $30 billion.
Erdogan's announcement came a week after his meeting with his Iranian and Russian counterparts, Ebrahim Raisi and Vladimir Putin, in Tehran, in which Turkey and Iran signed eight memorandums of understanding (MOUs) and agreements in various fields including trade and investment.
Erdogan reiterated the need for the development of ties at a joint conference with Raisi in Tehran last week, following the signing of the mentioned agreements.