Iran, Russia discuss new barter arrangement
Russia is in talks with Iran for supplies of petrochemical products in exchange for assets as part of their barter deal, an official in Tehran has said.
Several delegations have visited Tehran and Moscow in recent weeks to finalize talks for a new mode of cooperation, Secretary of Association of Petrochemical Industry Corporation Ahmad Mahdavi said on Friday.
“The highlight of the negotiations was reaching an agreement on the barter of petrochemical products and a variety of goods,” he said, stating that the plan had not been finalized yet.
“Russian companies have announced their need for imports of various petrochemical products such as urea, methanol and polymers.
“Separately, they have proposed to import Iran’s petrochemical products in order to export them to the European countries, especially the Eastern Bloc nations,” Mahdavi added.
Russia, the Central Asia and Caucasian nations are among Iran's markets for exports of petrochemical and polymer products.
Mahdavi said, “Even if the sanctions are fully voided and petrochemical exports to Europe resume, Iran’s petrochemical sales to China, India, the Central Asia as well as South, Southeast and East Asia will not face a decline.”
Iran and Russia have signed a barter deal for supplies of oil in exchange for goods but the arrangement has apparently faced hiccups for yet unknown reasons.
In the past, Russian officials have announced sending grain, equipment and construction materials to Iran only to retract their statements later.
The initial arrangement was for Iran to sell about 500,000 bpd of crude oil to Russia and use the money for purchase of goods from that country.
In May, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said Russian and Iranian companies were discussing terms for a barter deal that excluded oil deliveries.
Novak clarified that the deal did not envisage any oil supplies to Russia, or Russia shipping Iranian oil cargoes on to other markets.
Another official said Russia, instead, would begin imports of Iranian dairy, fish and meat products in exchange for grain.
Iran and Russia have close diplomatic ties but sanctions have prompted the two countries to strengthen their economic and trade relations as well.