Free Trade Zones

Defusing tensions, forming a “strategic partnership” with neighbors is a priority: Iran’s security ch


TEHRAN – In a meeting with the Iranian ambassador to neighboring countries and border governors on Monday afternoon, Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani said that “defuse tensions” and allay all concerns and establishing a “strategic partnership” with neighbors are among Iran’s priorities.

Shamkhani also said Iran seeks comprehensive economic, defensive and security cooperation with its neighbors.

He insisted on the need to adopt policies that would strengthen cooperation among countries in the region, especially Iran’s interaction with its neighbors.

Growth in ties with neighbors should be assessed and the performance of diplomats in neighboring countries and border governors should be “measured” in this regard, Shamkhani suggested.

The security chief added that it is necessary to exploit all capacities to achieve such a goal.

FM says the level of border trade is insufficient

Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian and Interior Minister Ahmad Vahidi also met with Iranian ambassadors in neighboring countries and 17 border governors on Sunday.

The secretary of the Higher Council of Free Zones, Saeed Mohammad, and the Chairman of the Parliamentary and Home Affairs Committee, Mohammad Saleh Jokar, were also present at the meeting.

Amir Abdollahian described the government’s foreign policy plan to activate relations with neighbors with the aim of developing trade and tourism.

The foreign minister said the foreign ministry had offices in 29 of the country’s 31 provinces, which in the past were mainly devoted to consular affairs, but now the goal of the ministry and its offices in the provinces is economic.

Unfortunately, foreign trade, especially in border areas, is not up to Iran’s capabilities, Amir Abdollahian noted.

He also called on the governors of border provinces to help remove barriers to trade and tourism.

During the meeting, the Minister of Interior also spoke of the importance of paying attention to neighboring countries, mentioning the many opportunities available in the region.

Vahidi expressed hope that heads of Iranian missions in neighboring countries and border governors would use all existing capabilities in the region and increase mobility with a joint plan of comprehensive cooperation with neighboring countries.

For his part, Saeed Mohammad enumerated the existing capacities in the free zones and the neglected benefits.

During the meeting, Jokar stressed the readiness of the parliament to cooperate with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Interior to promote cooperation in the field of relations with neighboring countries.

Heads of Iranian missions in neighboring countries and border governors also expressed their views and suggestions in detail, and at the end the heads of mission in the form of working groups discussed their relations with the neighboring provinces and countries.

The new administration of Ebrahim Raisi has privileged relations with neighboring and regional countries in accordance with the policy of “looking east”.

Speaking at a meeting with heads of missions of the Islamic Republic of Iran in neighboring countries, President Raisi said Tehran sees the notion of strengthening relations with neighboring countries as “strategic”.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh told IRIB News on Saturday that openings have taken place in some monetary and financial areas with some neighboring countries, and that some openings are continuing in the coming days.

Khatibzadeh added: “In the last hundred days, since the start of President Raisi’s administration, we have practically extended our economic relations with Tajikistan to 2.5 to 3 times more than before. ”

Regarding Turkmenistan, Iran also succeeded in removing obstacles to trade during President Raisi’s recent visit to Turkmenistan, he added.

The diplomat said Iran has 15 neighbors and the president will visit all of them soon.

“The president’s visit to each of these countries is planned and soon some of the leaders of these countries, including Turkey, will come to Tehran,” he added.

He further said that the Foreign Ministry has launched a new mission in the form of 20-year roadmaps and documents with neighboring countries.