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Proposal for OPEC-type gas bloc between Iran and Russia gets attention

Tehran, Jan 30, IRNA - The Supreme Leader's proposal to form OPEC-type Gas Association would serve to develop cooperation between the world major gas producing countries, Iranian MP Kazem Jalali said on Tuesday.

Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in a meeting with Russian secretary of national security council Igor Ivanov on Sunday suggested that Iran and Russia would form a gas cooperation organization like OPEC. The two countries have about half of global gas reserves are considered world major gas producers.

The Russian officials have welcomed the Supreme Leader's proposal.

Jalali, who is member of parliamentary commission on national security and foreign policy, said that the proposal was important and that Iran and Russia, the two major producing gas states, could play a very important role in this regard.

Pointing to the US government efforts creating obstacles on the way of Iranian cooperation with other countries, specifically on the economic field, he noted that basically, every country decides on its own national interests.

Jalali also noted to the current process of major investments of foreign companies indicated that the companies see their interests on contrast with political views of certain powers.

Despite US opposition, the agreements for development of phases 13 and 14 of South Pars Gas fields was signed between Iran and Shell and Repsol representatives with the total value of dlrs 10 billion.

Former Duma speaker welcomes Supreme leader's suggestion

Moscow, Jan 29, IRNA - Former speaker of Russia's Duma welcomed a suggestion by Iran to establish an organisation like OPEC to protect he interests of natural gas producing countries of the world.

Speaking to reporters here on Monday Gennadi Seleznev said, "It is an interesting idea to set up an organization with participation of Iran, Russia, Algeria, Qatar and other major producers of natural gas."

Seleznev, who is currently the leader of a parliamentary faction in Duma referred to the situation of the main producers of gas in the world market and said, "We are scattered and such an organization can enefit us all and I'm sure that it would come into being." In November, NATO's economic committee, in a secret report, had warned against Russia's intention to unite the gas exporting countries in an organization like OPEC.

The report had cautioned that main producers of gas such as Iran, Russia, Qatar and Central Asian countries can become members of such an organization and use energy as a means to achieve political objectives.

Russia is the first producer of natural gas in the world. It produced over 645 billion cubic meters of natural gas in 2006.

... Payvand News - 1/30/07 ... --

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