Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 6
By Temkin Jafarov, Umid Niayesh - Trend:
An official from Iran's economy ministry has reiterated that the country welcomes Azerbaijani investors in its oil, gas and petrochemical sectors.
Iran's mining sector, in particular iron ore and copper as well as the country's metallurgy industry also provides a big opportunity for Azerbaijani investors, Sadegh Akbari, Director General for Economic Relations, Organization for Investment, Economic and Technical Assistance of Iran's economy ministry told Trend on Aug. 6.
The official stressed that Iran's agriculture and tourism sectors also are ready to accept Azerbaijan's investments.
Akbari who is in Baku for the ninth meeting of the Azerbaijani-Iranian intergovernmental commission on trade-economic and humanitarian cooperation remarked that the two countries agreed to cooperate in the fields of investment, trade and industry in the mutual meetings.
Iran and Azerbaijan discussed exchange of information and experiments on the issue and introducing investment opportunities as well as providing circumstances for cooperation of the two countries' investors, he added.
Akbari went on to note that the two neighboring countries also agreed on cooperation of investment assistance agencies from the two sides. Holding economic conferences and fairs in the field of investment for introducing the two countries' economic atmosphere and investment opportunities are also among the agreed topics, the official stressed.
The two sides also have finalized a memorandum of understanding on the issue which will be signed soon, he added.
Commenting on Azerbaijan's investment opportunities for Iranian investors, Akbari said that the country has big investment capacities in particular in the housing and agriculture sector.
He noted that the two sides should provide needed conditions for their private sector investors to review the opportunities and make decision on the issue.
While responding to a question about the volume of agreed mutual investments, the official said that the two sides have not discussed the detailed volume of the investments, but they have agreed to use all capacities for providing ground for cooperation of the two sides' investors and businessmen.
Iran and Azerbaijan should facilitate the visa regime and circumstances for travel of the traders, he added.
Lifting visa requirement is a key point for promotion of ties between the two countries, Akbari said.
Iran has lifted visa for Azerbaijani citizens, the official stressed, adding if Azerbaijan repeals visa regime for Iranian traders it will positively affect the volume of the Iranian investors' investment in Azerbaijan's productive economic sectors.
He also called the talks between the officials of Iran and Azerbaijan very constructive and positive, saying it is not comparable with the earlier periods.
"Barriers for cooperation of the two neighbouring countries should be lifted. The self-imposed barriers only take the opportunities of the two nations," Akbari emphasized.
The two countries' decision makers should lift the unnecessary obstacles, he said.
The official also remarked that Iran considers no limitation for boosting trade ties with Azerbaijan.
Akbari expressed hope that the friendship atmosphere between the two countries' officials would spread to the economy sector and eliminate the limitations.
It should be noted that the trade turnover between Iran and Azerbaijan amounted to $94.12 million in January-June 2014, according to the State Customs Committee of Azerbaijan. At the same time, Azerbaijan imported Iranian products worth $76.81 million. The export volumes to Iran stood at the level of $17.31million.