Sunday, August 14, 2022

Envoy: Iran preparing documents to join Shanghai Cooperation Organization

Tehran is preparing the necessary documents to join the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), Iranian envoy to Russia Kazem Jalali said in an interview with TASS.

“The process of obtaining full membership in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization consists of numerous stages that a candidate country needs to implement within the established time frame,” he pointed out.

“According to the schedule, Iran is preparing documents, passing through these stages and notifying the Shanghai Cooperation Organization on a regular basis,” he added.

Russia and Iran are actively developing bilateral cooperation and major events are expected to take place in their relations, Jalali stated.

“Since the beginning of 2022, the two countries have been extensively exchanging political and economic delegations. Over this period, the two countries’ presidents have had numerous contacts, both personal and over the phone and they will have a meeting and talks in the near future,” he continued.

“It demonstrates the closeness of the comprehensive relations between our countries. In the future, we will witness major events in bilateral ties,” he noted.

According to the Iranian diplomat, Moscow and Tehran are actively cooperating within multilateral formats.

“As for multilateral formats, Iran and Russia are seriously cooperating with each other too. Iran’s membership in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and its talks with the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) toward the signing of permanent agreements on free trade, as well as the Iranian president’s participation in the BRICS summit, show that the countries have close positions and a lot od areas for cooperation,” he said.

Earlier, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov stated Moscow and Tehran may shift away from estimating mutual trade volumes in dollars as cooperation between the two countries steps up in the economy, particularly in the banking sector.

“Last year trade and economic relations between the two countries slightly surpassed $4 bln. Though it is probably incorrect to estimate them in US dollars and moving forward, we will perhaps shift away from this practice, as our cooperation in the banking, financial area steps up,” he added.

Asked when trade turnover between Russia and Iran may go beyond the current $4 bln to $10-15 bln, Peskov noted that it might be even higher.

“This is a realistic guideline for us, the potential of the two countries is huge, with large reserves in place,” he continued.

Russian President Vladimir Putin will hold meetings with Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan during his visit to Tehran on July 19, Peskov said.

He noted that the main purpose of Putin’s visit to Tehran is to participate in the Astana Troika summit.

“In addition, our president has three meetings scheduled: these are talks with President Raisi, with President Erdogan, and the president will also pay a visit to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei. We hope it will be a very comprehensive dialogue,” the Kremlin spokesman added.

According to him, the leaders will be able to discuss bilateral relations at the meetings, “first and foremost, trade and economic relations with both Iran and Turkey.”

“[There will be] prospects and all modalities for continuing the political dialogue with both Iran and Turkey, and exchanging views on the most relevant topics, because there are so many hot spots around us that need our cooperation in order to resolve them,” Peskov noted, pointing out the topics of the upcoming talks.

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