Germany is waiting for the Iran-EU gas pipeline

Apr 08, 2004 02:00 AM

Germany is an economic power in the world. As the biggest crude importer it is also the second largest purchaser of natural gas among the West European nations. Oil consumption hit 2.7 bn barrel in this country in 2002.
Germany, home to the European Central Bank, joined the euro currency in Jan 1999. Germany is also a nuclear power with 19 atomic power plants accounting for 20 % of electricity generation there.

Economic and trade cooperation between Iran and Germany dates back to long time ago. German companies are mainly involved in Iran's petrochemical sector. Germany is a major purchaser of Iran's non-oil products.
We have conducted an interview with German ambassador to Tehran, Paul Von Maltzahn.

Question: Is Germany mulling over any plan to expand its economic and trade cooperation with Iran, notably in oil and gas sectors?

Answer: As you know our petrochemical cooperation with Iran dates from long time. But Germany has never been active in oil and gas recovery anywhere in theworld. Germany is scarcely involved in oil and gas industries. We prefer downstream industries to upstream sectors and oil recovery.
Germany is active in petrochemical sector. We were spearheading production of synthetic materials in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Question: Can you tell us of oil and gas cooperation between the two countries?

Answer: We rarely maintain direct oil contact with Iran. That is no loss for Iran and the only problem is that level of economic transactions is not balanced. The important point is that Germany is the top importer of non-oil products from Iran.
We are also the biggest importer of natural gas in the world. We import oil and gas from The Netherlands, Norway and Russia. If Iran can pump gas to Europe via a pipeline we can benefit a lot. Iran holds big oil and gas reserves and it can export its resources to many countries in the world.

Question: What do you think of economic cooperation between Iran and Germany?

Answer: Economic and trade ties between Iranand Germany show positive perspective. Taking into account the figures on German exports to Iran, we find out that German exports to Iran have yielded 2.7 bn euros. It indicates well the desire of Iranian state-run and private companies to expand trade with Germany.
Germany mainly exports machinery for chemical production to Iran. We are also cooperating with Iran Khodro to set up an automaking factory in Tabriz. We have joint ventures with the National Petrochemical Company in Assaluyeh Petrochemical Complex. I hope that NPC chief Mr Nematzadeh would offer more projects to Germany.

Question: German companies armed Iraq with chemical warfare in its war against Iran through 1980-1988. Do you think that powerful countries can interfere in the global conflicts?

Answer: Germany is the main producer of chemicals in the world but I am not sure if it armed Iraq with chemical arms. Now we have strict control system and we supervise our exports.
In response to second part of your question, I say that theUnited States made a mistake in unleashing war on Iraq. Washington launched its military action under pretext of finding weapons of mass destruction.

Source: Tehran Times
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