The news source reported that the announcement was made by Gilan-e Gharb Governor Ardeshir Rostami during an executive co-ordination meeting of the officials of relevant bodies.

Govenor Rostami described the project as important for Iran politically and socio-economically, and said the project has already started from Kuhdasht and reached Gilan-e Gharb to cross the border en route to Iraqi capital Baghdad.

The Govenor said the pipeline was to be 225 km in length and will be completed by June 2013 with an investment of $US3 billion.

The oil ministers of Iraq, Iran and Syria had signed a preliminary agreement for a $US10 billion natural-gas-pipeline deal on 25 July 2011, in the Assalouyeh industrial region in the southern Iranian province of Bushehr.

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Iranian oil officials then said Syria would purchase between 20–25 MMcm/d of Iranian gas while Iraq had also already signed a deal with Tehran to purchase up to 25 MMcm/dbto feed its power stations.

The main project, a 1,500 km long gas pipeline, with 110 MMcm/d capacity, to transport Assalouyeh gas to Damascus, requires approximately $US10 billion in investment. The gas will be produced from the Iranian South Pars gas field in the Persian Gulf, which Iran shares with Qatar, and holds estimated reserves of 16 Tcm of recoverable gas.

Iranian officials have said that Tehran also aims to extend the pipeline to Lebanon and the Mediterranean to supply gas to Europe.