Dr. Vaezi, the co-Chairman of Iran-Russia Joint Economic Commission, stated that: “Within the framework of the strategy set by the Presidents of the two countries, Tehran and Moscow have set a priority to develop and expand relations in all sectors, especially developing inter-provincial cooperation between their border regions.”
According to the Public Relation department of the ICT Ministry, Dr. Vaezi, who has arrived in Astrakhan province in the North-Western shores of the Caspian Sea, to meet and negotiate with high-ranking Russian officials in the first leg of his trip to Russia, stated in an exclusive interview with IRNA news agency, that: “Bilateral relations between Iran and Russia are constantly growing in various aspects, something which is rooted in the numerous meetings between both Presidents during the past three years, and the strategy settled by them.”
Vaezi asserted that: “Various agreements and documents have been signed in this regard and is the time for action now, so that the private sectors of both nations can pursue their commercial and economic interests more confidently and extensively.”
The co-Chairman of the Iran-Russia Joint Economic Commission emphasized that: “The outcome of last autumn’s session of the Joint Commission was something beyond developing of relations of the capital cities, and it was decided that various provinces in Iran and Russia should set a priority for expanding cooperation and relations, especially in economic, investment and trade areas.”
He also referred to his negotiations with officials of Astrakhan in presence of Mehdi Sanayee, Iran’s Ambassador in Russia, underscoring that, “The objective of the present round of negotiations in Astrakhan is to achieve our set goals, in presence of a great number of Iranian merchants, traders and corporate experts. Inauguration of the shipping line and the official opening of the first Tehran-Astrakhan Air route clearly show the firm decision of both nations to provide the necessary facilities in this regard.
Last morning, in presence of the ICT Minister, first official flight between Tehran and Astrakhan landed in the airport of this city.
The Communication Minister also underscored the removal of obstacles hampering economic and commercial cooperation as yet another reason for continued negotiation of the Iranian delegation in Moscow, expressing hope that in near future, in addition to the growth of the tourism industry between the two countries, and especially with Astrakhan province, the parties shall witness growing Iranian exports to all Russia.
The negotiations of the Iranian delegation with the Astrakhan officials were proceeding at a time when a 45-strong Russian delegation were in Iran at the same time led by Alexander Zhilkin, the Governor of Astrakhan, for a 4-day visit to be concluded by Monday; holding meetings with officials of Mazandaran Province and also participating in the conference for development of Iran-Russia economic cooperation.
The port city of Astrakhan, located at the point where the Volga River joins the Caspian Sea, is considered a land and water highway and at the moment, with more than 200 Iranian firms operating in this region, has become the focal point of commercial and economic activities of Iranians in the southern Russia.
Based on current statistics, the most recent of which dates back to 2012, around 39% of the foreign trade of Astrakhan Province occurs with the I.R. of Iran.
At the second stage of this visit in Moscow, Dr. Vaezi will meet Veronica Nikishina, Minister for Trade of the Eurasian Economic Union, and also Nikolay Nikiforov, the Minister for Communication and Mass Media, Denis Manturov, the Minister of Trade and Industry, and Alexander Novak, the Russian Energy Minister, and the Russian co-Chairman of the Joint Economic Cooperation Commission to discuss cooperation development and further expansion of bilateral relations.