News ID: 208661
Published: 0335 GMT January 23, 2018

Iran, Belarus eager to increase energy cooperation, oil trade

Iran, Belarus eager to increase energy cooperation, oil trade

Iran and Belarus are keen on expanding cooperation in the energy sector, particularly, in the field of oil trade, with the former eager to raise crude exports to the latter.

The issue was highlighted in separate meetings between visiting Belarusian Minister of Industry Vitali Mikhailovich Vovk and Iran's First Vice President Es'haq Jahangiri and Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh, in Tehran on Tuesday.

Despite hostile efforts by the US to isolate Iran internationally and intensify pressure on the country by threatening to withdraw from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) signed between Iran and the P5+1, European states are stilling strongly backing the nuclear deal, affirming commitment to its implementation and sending their representatives to the Middle Eastern state for talks on expanding cooperation in various fields.

In the past few years, numerous delegations and top officials from European countries including Germany, France, the UK and Italy have visited Iran to explore avenues for fostering collaborations with Tehran, particularly, in the field of trade.

The latest of such visits, is that of a Belarusian delegation headed by Vovk, which has traveled to Iran to form the two countries' joint economic committee.



Oil investment welcome

Speaking in a meeting with Vovk, Jahangiri said Iran welcomes the participation of Belarusian investment companies keen on investing in Iran's oil and gas projects and expanding cooperation in this sector.

He made the remark in response to Vovk's call for expanding cooperation between the two states in the oil sector.

The first vice president voiced Iran's willingness to increase oil exports to Belarus and help the European country meet its energy needs.

"To this end, talks are required to reach a consensus on the mechanism of conducting financial transactions. Based on such an agreement, Iran will be prepared to supply oil to Belarus."

Jahangiri also expressed gratitude to Belarus for supporting Iran prior to the removal of Western sanctions.

He added undoubtedly, Iran's friends, Belarus in particular, would be assigned top priority in expanding all-out ties in the post-JCPOA era.

Jahangiri underlined that Belarus enjoys a high status in Iran's foreign policy, adding that exchange of delegations between the two countries will play a pivotal role in fostering bilateral ties.

Jahangiri pointed out that Washington is attempting to create a tense atmosphere against Tehran and hinder expansion of cooperation between Iran and other countries by imposing new sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

Turning to the active presence of terrorists in the Middle East, Syria and Iraq in particular, the vice president said Iran has managed to settle regional problems in collaboration with its friends, particularly Russia.

He added that both countries have huge untapped potential for forging mutual ties in the fields of advanced technologies and military industries.

Jahangiri called for resolving the problems faced by the Iranian companies which have invested in Belarusian projects.

Speaking in the same meeting, Vovk said, by visiting Iran, the Belarusian delegation aimed to increase cooperation between the two states in the fields of producing pharmaceuticals as well as in the railroad, electronic transportation and production sectors.

He stressed that during the visit, the two sides have reached a number of agreements to initiate cooperation in new fields and will compile a roadmap to strengthen mutual relations and promote trade with each other by 2020.

The Belarusian minister added his country is eager to cooperate with Iran in manufacturing combine harvester and tractors and transfer technology in this field to the Asian country.



More oil exports possible

Commenting on his Tuesday meeting with the Belarusian minister, Zanganeh said Belarus has announced willingness to purchase more oil from Iran.

He added further negotiations will be held to this end.

The Iranian oil minister noted that the Eastern European country had already imported two consignments of crude oil from Iran.

He said Belarus has so far received two million barrels of oil from Iran.

Zanganeh said Iran is also keen on developing relations with Belarus in the energy sector.

Expounding on the amount of Belarus' oil imports from Iran after his meeting with Zanganeh, Vovk said trade transactions between Tehran and Minsk were very successful in 2017.

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