Iranian oil minister to visit Athens to discuss energy cooperation

Environment and Energy Minister Panos Skourletis will discuss energy cooperation with Iranian Deputy Petroleum Minister in International Affairs and Trading Amir Hossein Zamaninia during the latter’s two-day visit to Athens on January 22, following an invitation by Skourletis.

According to a ministry announcement, the two sides will discuss energy relations between the two countries with an emphasis on the oil sector, while a wider meeting will follow with representatives from the two countries, the management of Hellenic Petroleum (ELPE) and Iran’s state oil company NIOC. The ministry has not yet announced the time of the meeting.

According to Iranian news agency Shana, Zamaninia’s visit will be a preliminary to an upcoming visit to Tehran by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.

Greece has started consultations with Tehran on ELPE’s debts, relating to crude oil purchases from Iran between December 2011 and March 2012, under a long-term contract with state oil company NIOC. Despite ELPE’s efforts to meet its obligations, the company was unable to pay its debt due to the imposition of the international sanctions on Iran.