Iran oil minister replaces state oil, gas chiefs

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Iran’s new oil minister has appointed Roknoddin Javadi as head of the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), replacing Ahmad Ghalebani, oil ministry news website Shana said on Wednesday.

Oil minister Bijan Zanganeh also made Javadi his deputy and named eight other board members of the state oil company as part of a wide shuffle of energy officials who served under the previous government.

Earlier this week, Zanganeh appointed Hamid Reza Araqi as the managing director of National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC), replacing Javad Oji.

He also installed Abbas Sheri Moqaddam as head of the National Petrochemical Company, replacing Abdolhossein Bayat, Shana said.

Javadi previously served as director of the Oil Industries Engineering and Construction Company (OIEC) and was head of NIGC when Zanganeh was oil minister under the reformist president Mohammad Khatami.

Iran holds the world’s fourth-largest proven oil reserves and the largest natural gas reserves but western sanctions have slashed its oil exports and stunted gas sector growth.

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