National Iranian Oil Company CEO Mohsen Khojastehmehr (C) is seen during an online ceremony to sign a memorandum of understanding worth around $40 billion with Russian state-owned Gazprom on 19 July 2022 in Tehran.

The National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) and Russia’s Gazprom have signed a “historic” deal worth $40 billion for joint investments in oil and gas projects.

NIOC chief Mohsen Khojastehmehr and Gazprom deputy chairman Vitaly Markelov signed the memorandum of understanding between the two state-owned companies on Tuesday using a video conference link, according to a news service report. from the Iranian Ministry of Petroleum, Shana.

The agreement was signed hours before Russian President Vladimir Putin’s scheduled visit to Tehran.

Shana’s report says the MoU will cover development projects in several Iranian oil and gas fields, including a $10 billion project in the Kish and North Pars gas fields located in the Persian Gulf, as well as $15 billion project to increase pressure at South Pars, the largest gas field located on the maritime border between Iran and Qatar.

NIOC and Gazprom will also cooperate on the completion of liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects as well as on the construction of gas export pipelines and on exchange agreements between Iran and Russia concerning natural gas and petroleum products, he added.

NIOC’s Khojastehmehr said the deal with Gazprom will be the largest foreign investment commitment ever in the history of Iran’s oil industry, adding that it will account for a quarter of all investments planned for the sector Iranian tanker until 2025.

He said delegations from NIOC and Gazprom held meetings in St. Petersburg in Russia and Tehran before the deal was signed.

The official, who is also Iran’s deputy oil minister, said the two state-owned companies would soon begin technical and economic discussions on the investment deal.