TEHRAN, July 15 (UPI) -- The Iranian government said a joint working group may be set up with Russian natural gas company Gazprom in an effort to broaden bilateral relations.
Deputy Petroleum Minister Hamid Reza Araqi, who also heads the National Iranian Gas Co., said Iran would cooperate with Gazprom at the working group level on equipment supply, technology transfers and financing of oil and natural gas projects.
NIGC and Gazprom have discussed ways to expand their footprints in the global market, he said Monday.
Iran announced a series of joint efforts in the energy sector with its Russian counterparts this year. Both sides cooperate on nuclear energy issues, with Russia supplying nuclear fuel for Iran's reactor at Bushehr.
"Establishment of a joint committee comprising National Iranian Gas Company and Russia's Gazprom has been put on the agenda with the aim of expanding ties and cooperation," Araqi said.
Washington has expressed concern over bilateral cooperation between Iran and Russia. Iran is under pressure for its controversial nuclear program, while Russia is at odds with Western powers because of its stance on Ukraine and Syria.