Iranian, Turkish FMs to Discuss Bilateral, Regional Issues

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif is scheduled to hold a meeting with his Turkish counterpart in Ankara today to discuss diverse issues, including the latest developments in crisis-hit Syria, Iran’s foreign ministry said in a statement.

Iranian, Turkish FMs to Discuss Bilateral, Regional Issues

Zarif is planned to pay a one-day visit to Ankara on Saturday at the invitation of Turkish foreign minister, Ahmet Davutoglu.

According to the Iranian foreign ministry’s statement, the two senior diplomats will hold a meeting to exchange views on a range of issues from bilateral relations to the latest developments in the region, including the upheavals in Syria and the political procedures to settle the 3-year-old crisis in the Arab country.

In a similar meeting in December, Zarif and Davutoglu conferred on the regional and international developments during a meeting held on the sidelines of the ministerial meeting of the Group of Eight Developing Countries (D-8) in Islamabad, Pakistan.

Afterwards, the Iranian minister said he had exchanged views over Tehran-Ankara ties, multilateral issues and the ongoing developments in the Muslim world, including the crisis in Syria, during talks with his Turkish opposite number.

And in late November, 2013, Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani and Davutoglu had underlined the necessity for the further expansion of relations between Tehran and Ankara, especially in economic fields.

In a visit held here in Tehran, Davutoglu said given close cooperation between both countries, the annual trade volume must reach one hundred billion dollars within a period of five years.

Iran and Turkey have ample potentials and opportunities for expansion of relations and broadening of cooperation, the Turkish minister said, adding, “We should work together to increase our annual trade volume to $100 billion by the next five years."

Iran, which owns the world’s largest natural gas reserves, is Turkey’s second biggest gas supplier after Russia. Turkey uses a significant portion of its imported Iranian natural gas to generate electricity.

The volume of Iran-Turkey annual trade exchanges reached roughly USD16 billion in 2011, and soared past USD22 billion by the end of 2012.

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