MOSCOW, Feb. 13 (UPI) -- Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said Tehran was looking for Russia's help to increase oil and natural gas production.
Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said energy companies were examining opportunities for work in Iran. Salehi was quoted by the Platts news service as saying Tehran aims "to increase production volumes of oil and gas and we hope Russian companies would take part in this growth."
Iran's state-funded broadcaster Press TV reports Russia and Iran signed deals for cooperation in oil and gas exploration Wednesday in Moscow.
Platts said economic sanctions targeting Iran's energy sector has pushed oil production from a 2011 level of 3.7 million barrels per day to 2.7 million bpd. The report stated, however, that Iran says its production level is around 4 million bpd.
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries in its February report said Iran's oil production increased from 2.66 million bpd in December to 2.69 million bpd by Jan. 13.
Iran in September started operations at the Bushehr nuclear plant with the help of Moscow. Russia, under an agreement with Iran, operates and supplies fuel for the plant.
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