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VLADIVOSTOK, October 4. /TASS/. Iran is not ready to replace Russia as a main gas supplier if sanctions are lifted, Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani said in an interview with the Vesti on Saturday news programme on the Russian Rossiya 24 television.
“As you know, Iran has in possession the largest deposits of gas,” Rouhani said. “But we lack behind in gas output and so we first think about domestic demands in our country.”
“We have problems in the winter from time to time but then, you know, there are lots of customers around us, in the east and in the west,” he said. “All our eastern, western and southern neighbours want to buy our gas which we will still have to extract.”
So “now the conditions are not like those when everybody thought that if Russia cancelled gas supplies, Iran would provide us with the same gas,” the Iranian president said adding that “our production is far from this stage.”
Iran looks to stepping up co-operation with Russia in the gas-related sphere.
“In recent years we have been expending efforts so that countries exporting gas can co-operate,” he said. “Competition should not be problematic. It should be healthy and should bring profits only to buyers and so damage exporters.”
“So in gas sphere as well as in energy sector, the most optimal way is co-operation and interaction,” Rouhani said underscoring that “We are looking to acting in coordination with Russia in all spheres.