ISLAMABAD - Pakistan has urged Iran to lift tariff and non-tariff barriers on Pakistani products including rice and citrus.
National Assembly Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq made this request to Iranian President Hassan Rohani during his meeting with him in Tehran, said a press release issued by the National Assembly Secretariat on Monday. Sadiq also urged the Iranian president to turn the fraternal relations between the two countries into a mutually benefiting partnership. The NA speaker called for enhancing the trade volume, which currently stands at a considerably low level of mere $500 million. “The two countries have immense potential and can help each other in areas like energy, petroleum products, agriculture, citrus and fruit trade, surgical equipment and defence,” he added.
The over one hour meeting with President Rohani was termed “the president’s special gesture for Pakistan” given the fact that presidential elections have been announced in Iran and President Rohani made himself available for the meeting at a critical election drive.
Sadiq stressed Pakistan’s policy of unity among the Muslim world and assured President Rohani that Pakistan would never take any step that could go against the interest of the brotherly country of Iran. “Our region is worst affected by terrorism. We must pool our resources to jointly curb this menace, which is not only affecting our progress but also threatening our future generations,” he added.
While referring to the recent news reports on the brutalities of Indian forces in the Indian occupied Kashmir, the speaker asked Iran to play its role in the early implementation of the United Nations Security Council resolutions for the prompt settlement of the Kashmir dispute as per the wishes of the Kashmiri people.
President Rohani, while agreeing with the speaker, stated that the two countries should take benefit of the complementarities enjoyed by the two countries and forge cooperation where they can benefit from each-other’s comparative advantage. He showed immense interest in Iran’s joining the CPEC project.
Both sides expressed satisfaction on the recently concluded banking agreement, which would pave the way for expanded bilateral trade between the two countries through the banking channels. It is pertinent to mention here that the bilateral payment agreement (BPA) was signed between Pakistan and Iran last week in Tehran. The two leaders also took stock of the advancements in the completion of Pakistan-Iran Gas pipeline.
The Iranian president was introduced to the Pakistani delegation comprising MNAs Shahbaz Babar, Najaf Sial, Nadeem Abbas Rabhera, Ali Gohar Khan Mehr, Syed Ayaz Ali Shah Sherazi, Khyal Zaman Orakzai and Saman Sultana Jafari.