TEHRAN, Dec. 23 (Xinhua) -- Iran and Azerbaijan have agreed to reactivate the building of two hydroelectric power plants on the Aras river border, the Iranian Minister of Energy Reza Ardakanian announced on Wednesday.
"We will proceeded immediately to build the hydropower plants at the Khodaafarin dam," Ardakanian said to journalists at the sidelines of a cabinet meeting in Tehran, semi-official Mehr news agency reported.
The final discussions were held late on Tuesday in Iran's capital with Azeri Deputy Prime Minister Shahin Mustafayev, said the Iranian minister.
Works at the Khodaafarin dam on the Aras river between Iran's East Azerbaijan province and Azerbaijan's Jabrayil district are one of the main development projects undertaken by Iran's Ministry of Energy, he added.
The dam has the potential to regulate 1.6 billion cubic meters of water throughout the year, irrigate up to 120,000 hectares of agricultural land and feed "two hydropower plants with a total capacity of 280 MW of electricity," said the minister.
The project was originally conceived in the 1970s as a joint plan between Iran and the Soviet Union, but the construction began in 1999 by Iran alone until it was inaugurated in 2010.
Four years ago, Iran and Azerbaijan reached an agreement to carry on with the project with the construction of the power plants.
Nevertheless, a disagreement existed between the two countries concerning the cost-sharing scheme, which was finally solved in the last meeting, the Iranian minister said. Enditem