The Russian food safety regulator Rosselkhoznadzor said the 100,000 ton cargo got underway a few days ago.
"Yes, the deliveries began a few days ago, as of now 100,000 tons of grain have been shipped," Alexey Alexeyenko, an aide to the head of the Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance was quoted by RIA Novosti as saying.
The Russian official reiterated that Moscow will ship at least 1.3 million tons of grain to Iran this year.
Russian media outlets including RT announced that the delivery has been made as part of an ‘oil-for-goods’ barter deal between Iran and Russia.
However, Iranian officials have already rejected any crude-for-goods barter deal, saying Tehran and Moscow have devised a mechanism through which Russia will sell Iran’s oil and deposit the revenues thus obtained in a fund that Iran can use to purchase its essential commodities.
“This agreement [between Iran and Russia] is not an oil-for-goods barer,” said Mohsen Qamsari, the NIOC director for international affairs.
Meanwhile, Iran’s Petroleum Minister Bijan Zangeneh said Russia will import crude from Iran in exchange for cash.
“Russia will buy less than 500,000 bpd from Iran in exchange for cash,” Zangeneh was quoted by the ISNA News Agency as saying.
He expressed the hope that Russia would start importing crude from Iran this week.
Iran’s crude exports have dropped by over 50% to nearly 1.1 barrels per day (bpd) after the US and its allies started imposing unilateral sanctions against the country over its nuclear energy program back in 2012.
Tehran is now saying that it has already devised plans to increase its oil output by 500,000 bpd within two months and 1 million bpd within six to seven months once the sanctions against the country are lifted in case of a nuclear deal with the five permanent members of UN Security Council (P5+1).
Iran and the P5+1 group have already reached a mutual understanding over Tehran’s nuclear program. The two sides are now seeking to finalize a nuclear deal by end of June.