TEHRAN (Iran News) – A high-ranking Turkmen delegation headed by Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers of Turkmenistan Atdayev Batyr Taganovich attended a meeting with Iranian Industry, Mining, and Trade Minister Reza Fatemi-Amin to discuss ways of expanding trade ties.
In this meeting, held on Tuesday, the two sides stressed the need for the establishment of a Tehran-Ashgabat trade center, the portal of Iran’s Trade Promotion Organization (TPO) reported.
The attendees also emphasized supporting the businessmen of the two countries in order to facilitate and accelerate trade relations and decided to form a working group to draw a one-year roadmap for future cooperation.
Welcoming the Turkmen side’s proposal for establishing a joint business center, Fatemi-Amin said: “We have established business centers in 16 countries and this is a good way to expand economic relations.”
He also stressed the need to define an action plan for the two countries’ trade activities to determine products and goods for import and export.
Taganovich for his part called on the Iranian government to hold joint exhibitions with Turkmen companies.
The official also suggested that an agreement be signed to increase trade relations between the two countries. He also called for the development of border markets.
Increasing Turkmenistan’s gas swap to Azerbaijan
On the same day, Iranian Oil Minister Javad Oji held talks with the Deputy Chairman of the Turkmenistan Cabinet for Oil and Gas Affairs Shahin Abdul Rahmanov during which the Turkmen side asked Iran to increase gas swaps to Azerbaijan and other neighboring countries.
Speaking to the press after the meeting, Oji said the 13th administration under President Raisi has made good achievements in the field of energy diplomacy over the last 10 months, adding, “An agreement was signed on swapping gas from Turkmenistan to the Republic of Azerbaijan through Iran, and currently 1.5 to two billion cubic meters of gas is being swapped annually.”
He mentioned a recent visit to the Republic of Azerbaijan in line with strengthening energy diplomacy, and said, “During the visit, the Azerbaijani side asked us to double the gas swap from Turkmenistan, which was welcomed by Iran.”
According to the minister, in the meeting with Abdul Rahmanov, the Turkmen side has also called on Iran to increase gas swaps to Azerbaijan and other neighboring countries, and the oil ministry has announced its readiness to do so.
Referring to the existence of the necessary infrastructure and extensive gas transmission network in the country to increase the swap, Oji said, “While negotiating with the Turkmen side the increase of the gas swap, one of the highlights of my talks with the Turkmen official was the revival of the Turkmen gas export contract with Iran.”
He stated that the payment of Iran’s gas dues to Turkmenistan was one of the topics discussed with the Turkmen side, adding, “According to the negotiations, the receivables from the gas exports to Iraq for gas debts will be transferred from Iraq to the account of the Turkmen side.”
Oji said that the export of petroleum and petrochemical products and the catalysts needed in the industry were other subjects discussed during the talks with the Turkmen official.
Boosting transportation ties
Meanwhile, Iran’s Minister of Transport and Urban Development Rostam Qasemi met with Director-General of the Agency for Transport and Communications of Turkmenistan Chakyev Mammethan Berdimyradovich and negotiated the promotion of transport and transit ties between the two countries.
Speaking in the meeting, Qasemi referred to the 50 percent increase in transportation between Iran and Turkmenistan following the previous agreements between the two countries, saying: “By reviewing transportation tariffs and fulfilling agreements between the two sides, traffic between the two countries can be further increased.”
Berdimyradovich for his part emphasized that there are no restrictions on the expansion of transportation ties between the two countries.