TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif underlined the need for the removal of obstacles in the way of Tehran-New Delhi cooperation in the banking sector.
"I am hopeful that Iran and India will broaden their relations in the economic field, specially banking and trade relations," Zarif said in a meeting with Indian Foreign Secretary Subrahmanyam Jaishankar in Tehran on Tuesday.
The Iranian foreign minister pointed to the status quo of Iran-India relations, and said, "The two countries have a lot of common grounds to enhance mutual cooperation in different fields, trade and energy in particular."
Jaishankar, for his part, said that prospects of India relations with Iran are promising.
He described his meetings with senior Iranian officials, Minister of Petroleum Bijan Zangeneh in particular, as positive in energy cooperation.
He also underlined mutual collaboration in the arenas of transit and North-South international corridor.
In a relevant development on Tuesday, Iranian and Indian delegations in a meeting in Tehran conferred on New Delhi's offer to develop the first phase of Farzad B gas field in the Persian Gulf as well as the Indian refineries' debts to Iran.
The Indian delegation, headed by Jaishankar held a meeting with Zangeneh on grounds to expand cooperation between the two countries in the oil sector.
They also negotiated the Indian state-owned oil company ONGC Videsh's plans to invest more than $3 billion to develop Iran’s Farzad B gas field and studied the problems existing between the company and the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) to finance the project.
The two sides also discussed certain Indian refineries' debts to Iran which have still remained unpaid after the removal of sanctions against Tehran.
ONGC Videsh in March submitted a revised plan to the Iranian government for the field, which the company will be able to develop within five years, Managing Director N.K. Verma told reporters in Mumbai.
Noting that the Indian company plans to spend more than $3 billion on Iran’s Farzad-B natural gas block, he added it is now waiting for feedback from Tehran.
Verma said output from Farzad B could range from 1 billion to 1.6 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day.
Indian companies have been in talks with Tehran since 2009 for developing the Farzad B gas field, estimated to hold 21.68 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of gas in place, of which 12.8 tcf is recoverable.
With 137.6 billion barrels of proven reserves, Iran has the world’s fourth largest crude deposits. In terms of gas reserves, according to the 64th edition of the BP Statistical Review of World Energy released in June 2015, Iran is the world’s top gas reserves holder with 33.8 trillion cubic meters.