Tehran has proposed the creation of a regional gas hub within the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) to ensure energy security, according to reports from Fars news agency. Speaking at a meeting of the Council of Heads of Governments of the SCO member states in Bishkek, the first vice president of the Islamic Republic, Mohammad Mokhber, highlighted the benefits of such a move. He stated that the establishment of a gas hub would enable the nine members of the bloc to trade and exchange energy, including fossil fuels, electricity, and renewables.
Mokhber also discussed Tehran’s proposal to create a fund for interested investor countries to jointly finance petrochemical projects. Furthermore, he emphasized the readiness of Iran to provide engineering services and produce equipment for the oil, gas, and petrochemical sectors. Iran has been actively seeking to create a gas hub as part of its efforts to strengthen regional cooperation and enhance its position in the global energy market. Despite facing US sanctions, the country is still one of the largest oil and gas producers worldwide, with a significant portion of its energy being sold to Asian markets.
In July, Iran became the ninth full member of the SCO, having previously held observer status in the Eurasian security and economic development bloc. The SCO, initially formed as the Shanghai Five in the 1990s, included China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, and Tajikistan. Uzbekistan joined in 2001, leading to the renaming of the organization. The most recent enlargement in 2017 saw India and Pakistan becoming members. Belarus also signed a memorandum on accession earlier this year, taking the necessary step to become an SCO member. Apart from Belarus, Afghanistan and Mongolia currently have observer status, while over a dozen nations are viewed by the SCO as dialogue partners.
The proposed regional gas hub within the SCO highlights Iran’s commitment to expanding its energy partnerships with its Eurasian trade partners. By leveraging its position as a major oil and gas producer, Iran aims to capitalize on the economic and strategic advantages of regional cooperation in the energy sector. The establishment of a gas hub would facilitate greater trade and exchange between SCO member states, ultimately contributing to energy security for all involved parties.
The SCO offers a platform for Iran to collaborate with countries within the Eurasian region that share common interests and objectives. This partnership serves as an opportunity for Iran to diversify its energy market and reduce its dependence on traditional markets, such as Europe and the United States. Additionally, it allows for knowledge-sharing and technology transfer, which can benefit all participating nations.
Creating a fund for interested investor countries to jointly finance petrochemical projects further demonstrates Iran’s commitment to fostering economic cooperation within the SCO. By pooling resources and expertise, member states can drive economic growth and development in the region while also ensuring the sustainability of their energy industries.
Iran’s readiness to provide engineering services and produce equipment for the oil, gas, and petrochemical sectors is a testament to the country’s technical capabilities and expertise. This offer presents an opportunity for SCO member states to tap into Iran’s knowledge and resources, creating mutually beneficial partnerships and enhancing regional energy infrastructure.
In conclusion, Iran’s proposal for a regional gas hub within the Shanghai Cooperation Organization exemplifies its determination to enhance its position on the global energy market and strengthen regional cooperation. By leveraging its status as a major oil and gas producer, Iran seeks to increase trade and exchange of energy resources with SCO member states. Through the creation of a fund for petrochemical projects and the provision of engineering services and equipment, Iran aims to foster economic growth and development within the SCO. This proposal showcases Iran’s commitment to collaboration and its desire to establish a secure and sustainable energy future for the region.