Iran’s Deputy Oil Minister, Ali Kardor, announced that Iran will invite foreign companies to bid for oil and gas projects in the country’s first round of tenders since sanctions were lifted in January, reported New Zealand Herald.  Kardor added that all interested international oil firms must submit their data to the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) within 30-days for a qualification procedure.

Furthermore, Iran plans to hold three international tenders in 2016 for projects to collect natural gas liquids (NGL). Kardor projected that all contracts will be finalized before the end of Iranis current fiscal year by March 20. He concluded that NIOC will tender off a total of over 4000 contracts for 515 projects and 2000 sub-projects, according to Mehr News.

Iran had previously said that priority for exploration and production for foreign companies would be given to neighboring countries with which it shares border fields. The country has 28 joint offshore and onshore gas and oil fields with those countries. Additionally, Iran had already upgraded its model for oil contracts, allowing for a potential full recovery of costs over almost two decades. Earlier this month, Iran signed the first such contract with a local oil company.