ISLAMABAD: Iranian Ambassador Mohammad Ali Hosseini on Tuesday offered his governments support to complete Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline (IP) project and hinted at expanding cooperation in other fields of mutual interest.
Ambassador Hosseini, in Interview with APP said Iran is ready to further strengthen mutual trade cooperation; completion of energy projects, especially IP gas pipeline; progress in institution of border markets; completion of Free trade agreement and cooperation on main ports and security zones.
He said there were no sanctions. on export of gas from Iran and Pakistan can accept full benefit of this is to meet their energy needs. IP gas pipeline was key project in in this respect and countries realized its importance.
gas pipeline project being discussed by the technical committee, he said, adding that its completion also open new brochures for mutual cooperation between the two countries.
The ambassador said that Iran already export 100 megawatt of electricity in Pakistan for meeting power needs (of its bordering areas) and will be increased in future.
He said work was also going on another project to provide electricity to Pakistan. Both countries took the initial steps in in this respect.
Ambassador Hosseini identified opportunities for investors of both countries in various trade sectors, especially industrial areas.
Highlighting role of both countries in regional economic and trade integration, he said, and the North-South and East-West corridors would not only connect Pakistan with Iran, but also also help in the former trade and economic integration with Central Asia, Europe, Middle East and Russia.
He said two countries work together to achieve the goal of strengthening their mutual trade up to 5 billion dollars.
He said that both Pakistan and Iran are geographically very important. countries and their mutual cooperation was of it is essential to make it useful for their geoeconomic interests.
The ambassador said both countries could find ways for mutual economic partnership and trade. There was an opportunity of opening a banking channel in nearest future added.
He said barter trade between two countries can be promoted as “we have an example of mutual trade in rice and meat.”
As for the movement on the Pakistani-Iranian border, he said. new intersection points was opened. Two countries were determined to provide more objects at the crossroads points not only facilitate movement of common people but also transit trade.
He said it was decided in principle set up six border markets in to promote mutual trade connections. Pishin border market was completed and opened on in cardsbye work on Gabd, Rimdan and Kohak markets will start soonhe added.
On the Free Trade Agreement (FTA), the Ambassador said several rounds of negotiations took place between two countries. Mutual trade exchanged lists, with consensus developed on trade items added.
He recalled that two countries signed a Preferential Trade Agreement in March 2004, which, according to him, required for consideration and made more effective.
He emphasized need of tariff rationalization and other reforms for volume up of mutual trade up to 5 billion dollars. It would be also help promote regional trade added.
As for the two countries’ role in promotion of regional trade said the ambassador Both transit routes and transport were too important in in this respect. The Pakistan-Iran-Turkey rail link has been restored, which would not only contribute to the economic and trade relationship between three countries but also improve the regional economic and trade integration.
The three governments agreed equip train route with objects that would promote mutual trade and goods trade operation, he added. He said the Taftan-Quetta section of the train needed to be repaired and both Iran and Pakistan agreed to do so.
He said that the rail link between Pakistan, Iran and Turkey could play very important role in regional trade integration as it could connect Central Asia, the Middle East and Europe economically and commercially. He said the Iranians have experience in production of trains and wagons. Just like his country special expertise in field of transportation is very important for transit trade.
The Iranian Ambassador answered the question directly air links between Tehran and Islamabad, etc. big cities of two countries it was very important for promotion of relationships.
He said there were many of potential in religious tourism in both countries. people of Pakistan visited Iran for pilgrimage to holy places. He expressed hope for possibility of open vise policy between two countries.
Ambassador said for promotion of electronic commerce trade between two countries, young population should participate. Likewise, he said, cooperation between chambers and business communities of both countries will promote warm relations on both sides.