Iran ready to export gas, electricity to Pakistan: Zarif

Press TV – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has stressed the importance of the strengthening of economic cooperation between Tehran and Islamabad, saying Tehran is ready to export gas and electricity to Pakistan.

Zarif made the remarks in a meeting with Speaker of Pakistan’s National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq in Tehran on Saturday.

He added that Iran and Pakistan enjoy very good relations not only in the diplomatic arena but also in parliamentary, security and economic sectors, expressing the Islamic Republic’s readiness to further expand such ties.

“We welcome Islamabad’s participation in the project to develop [Iran’s southeastern] port of Chabahar,” Zarif said.

Chabahar is located in the Gulf of Oman on the border with Pakistan. It is the closest and best access point of Iran to the Indian Ocean.

“The security of Pakistan is of high significance for the Islamic Republic of Iran,” the top Iranian diplomat also pointed out.

Common Iran-Pakistan stance on regional peace

The top Pakistani parliamentarian, in turn, said Tehran and Islamabad share views on the importance of the establishment of peace and security in the region and the reinforcement of unity in the Muslim world.

He called on Iran to join the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, which is a collection of infrastructure projects currently under construction throughout Pakistan.

Zarif and Sadiq also urged a joint campaign against terrorism and extremist groups.

Iran-Pakistan pivotal role in terror fight

Also on Saturday, Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani said the Islamic Republic and Pakistan have “very close” views on approaches toward solving regional issues, stressing that the two countries play an influential role in the fight against terrorism.

Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani (R) and Speaker of Pakistan’s National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq attend a joint press conference in Tehran on April 22, 2017. (Photo by IRNA)

“The two countries are making efforts to establish lasting peace and security in the region,” Larijani said in a joint press conference with the speaker of Pakistan’s National Assembly following their meeting.

He described Pakistan as a friendly neighboring country to Iran and added that Islamabad has played a leading role in promoting peace in the region.

“We have held very close talks in various regional and international bodies and we have very close views on how to settle regional issues,” the top Iranian parliamentarian said.

Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani (R) and Speaker of Pakistan’s National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq meet in Tehran on April 22, 2017. (Photo by IRNA)

He noted that Tehran and Islamabad seek to bolster economic cooperation and called for the adoption of necessary strategies to increase the level of trade ties to nearly USD 5 billion.

Need for unity reinforcement

The speaker of Pakistan’s National Assembly, for his part, stressed the importance of taking steps to reinforce unity among Muslims and to fight terrorism.

Sadiq further said his country attaches importance to bolstering relations with Iran, adding that the two sides would not allow minor differences to turn into major issues.

He noted that Iran and Pakistan had agreed to improve military cooperation and hold regular meetings between the security advisors of the two countries.

Sadiq is on an official visit to Iran at the invitation of the top Iranian parliamentarian to hold talks with senior authorities of the country.