UPI: Iran is looking to bolster ties with regional energy-producing nations while seeking a $7 billion supplemental to cover gas imports, officials said.
United Press International
TEHRAN, Oct. 2 (UPI) — Iran is looking to bolster ties with regional energy-producing nations while seeking a $7 billion supplemental to cover gas imports, officials said.
Iranian Ambassador to Kazakhstan Romin Mehmanparast told a delegation at an Iranian energy exhibition it is seeking stronger ties with Kazakhstan and energy-producing states in the Caspian region.
Meanwhile, Iranian Oil Minister Gholamhossein Nozari said the country needed $7 billion to import fuel through the end of the Iranian year on March 20, the state-run Fars News Agency said Thursday.
The Iranian Parliament in February granted a request from the Oil Ministry to import $3.2 billion worth of fuel for the fiscal year, which began March 21, 2008.
"Nozari said we will need $6.5 billion to $7 billion for the import of fuel in the second half of the year," said Oil Ministry spokesman Ali Adianirad.
Though it is the fourth-largest oil producer in the world, Iran relies heavily on gas imports, as its refining capacity cannot meet domestic demands.
Iran has imposed a rationing system to curb fuel consumption. Deputy Oil Minister Mohammad Reza Nematzadeh said the average fuel consumption for August was about 18.5 million gallons per day.
The United States, by contrast, consumes roughly 390 million gallons per day, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.