DUBAI / Reuters
Iran is exporting around 350,000 barrels of crude oil a day to India and hopes to increase this number, Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh was quoted as saying on Saturday after meeting Indian counterpart Dharmendra Pradhan.
The Shana news agency, linked to Iran’s oil ministry, quoted Zanganeh as saying Indian oil purchases from Iran were at 350,000 barrels a day, and that “we hope this number will increase now that sanctions have been lifted”.
The two ministers signed a cooperation agreement covering oil exports, the petrochemical sector and the development of a gas field, though there were no reports of any final deals being signed. Pradhan said India was ready to invest $20 billion in the port of Chabahar port in southeastern Iran, according to Shana, adding that “Iran and India’s energy ties are no longer limited to crude oil imports”.
Zanganeh said Indian companies were looking to invest in oil, gas and petrochemical projects in the Islamic Republic, but that reaching deals was “a difficult task and needs time”.
Industry sources last week said Indian refiners are looking to ramp up purchases of Iranian crude after sanctions on Tehran were lifted in January, bringing India’s imports to at least 400,000 bpd in the coming year.