Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Trade Exchanges Between Iran and Turkey Set to Reach Five Billion Dollars

Description of Selected News: "Trade Exchanges Between Iran and Turkey Set to Reach Five Billion Dollars

TEHRAN (IRNA) -- Visiting Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan who is in Iran at the head a high politico-economic delegation conferred here Wednesday with First Vice President Mohammad-Reza Aref on expansion of mutual cooperation.

According to the Press Bureau of the presidential office, at the meeting Aref highlighted the existing capabilities and potentials of both countries and expressed the hope that exchange of visits between the two sides' high ranking officials would help further expand and deepen mutual relations in all fields with an aim of addressing the two sides' interests.

Iran attaches great importance to promotion of ties with Turkey, he said adding that if the two sides take advantage of the existing opportunities and help remove all barriers they would be able to raise the current level of trade exchange to dlrs five billion.

Increase in the level of trade exchanges between the two countries demonstrates the firm determination of Iranian officials to further broaden economic and commercial ties between the two sides, he said.

Pointing to the current level of trade exchanges in telecommunication technology, energy as well as transfer of gas, he said transfer of gas from Iran to Europe via Turkey is considered as a very significant development in the region.

He also hoped to witness further expansion of bilateral cooperation in oil, petrochemical, science and technical areas between Iran and Turkey.

Expansion of cooperation between Iran and Turkey on regional developments such as the current crisis in Afghanistan and Iraq would be to the benefit of the countries of the region, he underlined.

Cooperation among regional countries in dealing with the ongoing international developments mainly in Palestine, Afghanistan and Iraq as well as U.S. unilateral policy is of prime importance, he said.

Calling the Islamic Republic of Iran and Turkey as two very big and powerful countries of the region, he termed the two sides cooperation in expediting regional development as very significant.

Iran and Turkey have adopted very close stands on regional developments such as condemning global terrorism, he pointed out.

Iran calls for a region free from nuclear weapons as well as weapons of mass destruction, he said adding that the peaceful application of nuclear technology is the legitimate right of all countries such as Iran who has a very close cooperation with International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The Turkish prime minister, for his part, highlighted the two sides' historical and cultural commonalties, exchange of visits between the two sides high ranking officials in line with further deepening mutual political, economic and cultural relations.

Referring to mutual cooperation in gas and energy, transportation, infrastructure, banking and tourism fields, he called for further broadening of bilateral cooperation.

Referring to the current increase in the level of trade exchanges between the two countries, he hoped to witness further expansion of bilateral relations, exchange of views and visits between the two sides officials and the businessmen in particular.

Terrorism is considered as a serious threat to the region and the whole world, he said and underlined the need for positive cooperation in border areas and called for further expansion of security cooperation between the two sides.

Lauding Iran's membership of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, he underlined the need to prevent proliferation of nuclear weapons and called for peaceful application of nuclear technology.

Iraq's territorial integrity should be safeguarded, he underlined and called for further expansion of cooperation between Tehran and Ankara in reconstruction of the war-shattered country as well as help with the development of Afghanistan.

He also expressed hope that current problems in Palestine would be removed and peace would be restored to the whole region.

Iran's Minister of Roads and Transportation Ahmad Khorram who was also present in the meeting gave a brief report on preparation of a draft agreement on mutual cooperation and said the current level of trade exchanges between the two countries was to reach dlrs three billion this year to dlrs five billion next year. Iran, Turkey Enjoy Similar Stances On Regional Developments: Speaker

Majlis Speaker Gholam Ali Haddad Adel said that Iran and Turkey enjoy similar stances on various regional developments including Iraq and Palestine.

In a separate meeting with Erdogan, Haddad Adel added very similar stances of Tehran and Ankara on the Iraqi development and the need to safeguard its territorial integrity would be served as the base for bilateral cooperation. Pointing to the presence of foreign forces in the region, he said, "The enemies of Islam are not still convinced of the separations created among Muslim states after World War I and are active in the region with their ominous goals." He cited fight against terrorism as among issues of concern of Iran and Turkey, saying "dominating international powers do not act honestly and wisely in fight against terrorism." The speaker assessed the Palestinian issue as among the most important issues of the Islamic world and stressed, "problems of the region will not be fundamentally solved if peace and justice are not established in Palestine." He termed the visit by the Turkish prime minister to Iran as a step to consolidate ties between the two countries and said, "Based on current realities, there are very positive grounds for expansion of relations which should be utilized in line with the two nations' national interests."

Haddad Adel said Islam is a very strong factor for consolidating friendly and brotherly bonds between the two nations and governments.

He voiced Majlis's readiness to support expansion of all-out relations between the two neighboring states particularly in parliamentary areas."


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