March 29, 2023

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Iran, Belarus ink comprehensive co-op roadmap, 7 MOUs

TEHRAN – Iran and Belarus signed a comprehensive cooperation roadmap and seven memorandums of understanding (MOU) in various commercial, transportation, agricultural and cultural fields in Tehran on Monday, IRNA reported.

The comprehensive roadmap was signed by the presidents of the two countries, while the cooperation MOUs were inked by senior officials from the two sides.

Speaking at a joint press conference with his Belarusian counterpart after signing the document, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said: “Good agreements were made in the field of industry, mining, trade, agriculture, roads and various fields, and we hope that it will be a step towards the development of the two countries.”

Referring to the determination of Iran and Belarus to develop relations in all fields, Raisi said: “Both countries are against unilateralism. We believe that independent countries can have good relations with each other which lead to the neutralization of sanctions.”

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, for his part, pointed to his last visit to Iran in 2006 and said that no sanctions or pressures have been able to stop the Iranian nation from progressing, and it is a fact that an independent and strong Iran is continuing its path.

Referring to the signed MOUs between the two countries, Lukashenko noted that if all these MOUs are implemented, the two countries can achieve $100 million of annual trade.

“The volume of trade between the two countries has tripled in 2022 compared to 2021,” he noted.

The Belarusian president expressed hope that the implementation of the comprehensive cooperation roadmap will help develop the relations between the two countries even more.

Heading a high-ranking delegation, Lukashenko arrived in Tehran on Sunday evening for a two-day official visit, aiming to expand ties between the two countries.

Expansion of trade, industrial ties

As part of the Belarusian delegation’s schedule in Tehran, the country’s Minister of Industry Rogozhnik Alexander Nikolaevich met with Iranian Industry, Mining, and Trade Minister Reza Fatemi-Amin on Monday to discuss ways of developing mutual ties.

During the meeting with Nikolaevich, who was accompanied by a group of industrial officials, Fatemi-Amin referred to the cooperation of the Export Guarantee Fund of Iran (EGFI) with its Belarusian counterpart and also an agreement between banks of the two countries, emphasizing that the infrastructure needed for the development of trade between the two countries is created.

He stated that an agreement on the possibility of barter trade between the two countries is also going to be signed soon, adding: “With the full accession of Iran to the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) in less than a year from now 80 percent of the tariffs between the two countries will be zeroed.

The minister further invited Nikolaevich and his team to visit the exhibition of Iran’s export capabilities, which will be held with the presence of ministers and trade delegations from more than 50 countries in Tehran during May 7-10.

Nikolaevich in his turn said Belarus pays special attention to the expansion of trade relations with Iran, adding that: “In the days when both countries have been subjected to heavy and cruel sanctions, we must make a double effort to defeat the sanctions.”

Stating that with Iran’s joining the EAEU, many issues in the field of transportation will be resolved, he emphasized: “Our goal is for Iranian products to flourish in the Belarusian market and Belarusian products to enter the Iranian market.”


Photo: Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi (R) and his Belarusian counterpart Alexander Lukashenko in signing ceremony of a comprehensive cooperation document in Tehran on Monday.

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