0651 GMT May 25, 2019
Iran and Iraq are keen on increasing their bilateral trade that currently stands at nearly $11 billion, Fars News Agency reported.
Both countries are taking steps to help increase engagement in commercial activities in border areas.
Officials from Iran and Iraqi Kurdistan Region visited various facilities and commercial complexes on both sides of the common border to explore ways to develop bilateral economic ties.
The deputy governor general for political affairs of Iran’s western province of Kurdestan, Hossein Khosheqbal, met officials from the Iraqi district of Panjwen.
Panjwen is part of Sulaymaniyah, a city in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region.
They visited the Siran-Band border crossing and market to gain more knowledge about the obstacles to further transport and transit.
Panjwen Mayor Zana Rahman said, “The Iraqi central government has agreed that Siran-Band becomes an official border crossing.”
He said the groundwork for the crossing's formal opening has been laid so that passengers can cross the border in the coming weeks.
The Iraqi delegation later visited commercial complexes at Baneh county on the Iranian side of the border.
On November 20, senior Kurdish officials said the Iraqi Kurdistan Region is resolved to continue business in Iran's market under any circumstances, adding Erbil will help Tehran to reduce the pressure of US unilateral sanctions.
"The Iraqi Kurdistan will help Iranian people and government under the US sanctions," Chairman of Iraqi Exporters and Importers Union in Kurdistan Sheikh Mustafa Abdul Rahman said on the sidelines of an exhibition in the northern Iranian province of Alborz.
The Iraqi Kurdistan official reiterated that Iran has great potentials in the fields of manufacturing and industry, saying, "We are very pleased that we live in proximity to the Islamic Republic of Iran."
He welcomed expansion of economic and trade cooperation with Tehran, describing as favorable cooperation between Iran and Iraq."
"Due to the high quality of Iranian goods, we welcome different Iranian products in the markets of Iraqi Kurdistan," he added.
The official noted that in order to expand mutual trade cooperation between Iran and Iraq, obstacles to increased monetary and banking relations between them must be removed.