ArmInfo. On February 27, Armenian Prime Minister Karen Karapetyan received the Iranian delegation headed by Iranian Energy Minister, co-chairman of the Armenian-Iranian intergovernmental commission Reza Ardakanian.
As the press service of the Armenian government reports, Karen Karapetyan highly appreciated the current level of political relations between Armenia and Iran and stressed that there are all prerequisites for strengthening and developing bilateral cooperation in various fields. In particular, in the matter of deepening economic cooperation, he stressed the importance of the activities of the intergovernmental commission, the next meeting of which was held on February 27 in Yerevan.
Reza Ardakanian conveyed to Prime Minister Karapetyan warm greetings from the First Vice-President of Iran Eshak Jahangiri and expressed confidence that the Yerevan session will give a new impetus to the development of bilateral economic cooperation. Reza Ardakanian presented to the Prime Minister the issues discussed at the meeting of the intergovernmental commission, and touched on the areas of cooperation. The Minister, in particular, said that the document aimed at deepening cooperation in the customs sphere was finalized and submitted for signing. In addition, the 3rd Iran-Armenia transmission line in 400 kV has also been successfully completed and is expected to be commissioned by the end of 2019. According to the Iranian Energy Minister, the meeting also discussed the implementation of the program of the Meghri hydropower plant, the expansion of cooperation in the field of road transport, environmental protection, including the development of ecotourism and the creation of a friendship park.
Reza Ardakanian noted the importance of deepening cooperation between the free economic zones "Aras" and "Meghri", stressing that Iranian investors are interested in this issue.
Prime Minister Karapetyan welcomed the development of cooperation in these areas and stressed the need to implement programs aimed at expanding trade turnover. The current volume of trade is insufficient. We are interested in implementing major projects and are ready to take appropriate steps, including organizing an open day for the Iranian business and responding to all their questions. We must change the scale of our relations, our team makes every effort to bring economic relations between the two friendly countries to the political level. During the meeting the parties also touched upon the issues of deepening cooperation in the fields of agriculture, education, the environment , health, tourism, etc.
According to National Statistical Service data, in Jan-Dec 2017, the Armenia-Iran trade turnover reached $ 263.4 million, with an annual growth of 10.1%. In the structure of foreign trade turnover, exports amounted to $ 84.1 million with an increase of 11.8%, and imports increased by 9.3%, reaching $ 179.3 million.