TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Officials from Iran and the Iraqi Kurdistan Region explored avenues for closer bilateral ties, with both stressing the need for measures to facilitate reciprocal trips by expanding consular services.
Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister for Consular, Parliamentary and Expatriates’ Affairs Hassan Qashqavi, who has travelled to the Iraqi Kurdistan Region, held a meeting with the semi-autonomous region’s Interior Minister Karim Sanjari on Saturday.
During the meeting, the Iranian diplomat called for joint measures to enhance consular services and facilitate trips and transportation given the large number of people crisscrossing between Iran and the Kurdistan Region, including merchants, economic activists, pilgrims, tourists and local people residing in the border areas.
Sanjari, for his part, voiced the serious determination of Iraqi Kurdistan Region’s government to prepare the ground for the presence of Iranian companies and business people there.
Back in May, Iran signed a contract to launch a trade center in Iraqi northern city of Erbil with the aim of facilitating trade with the Kurdistan region.
During a ceremony to ink the deal, Head of the Trade Promotion Organization of Iran Valiollah Afkhami Rad said it should serve to provide a good understanding of Iraq’s market, introduce Erbil’s trade attractions to traders and support the Iranian industries that eye a share in the Iraqi city.
A purpose behind setting up a trade center in Erbil, Afkhami Rad said, is to revive tourism, meaning that Iranian leisure and health tourism agencies can start a business there to facilitate the dispatch of Iraqi patients who need treatment.