Ukraine sees Iran as a major trading partner

Ukraine is keen to boost trade relations with Iran, the Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Serhiy Tihipko stated.

The National Radio Company of Ukraine quoted Tihipko as saying that, "Ukrainian oil and gas industry, as well as aircraft engineering are interested in developing cooperation with Iran and the Ukrainian-Iranian economic relations are very important for both countries."

He made the remarks during his meeting with Iranian Ambassador to Kiev Akbar Qasemi-Aliabadi.

During the meeting the two sides discussed bilateral trade and scientific-technical cooperation. 

Serhiy Tihipko said that after last year's recession, bilateral trade began to recover rapidly. Thus, Ukrainian exports to Iran since the beginning of the year have grown by more than 40%, while the country's imports rose by 60%. 

"In the Middle East, Iran is one of the key trading partners of Ukraine. It is important that high-tech engineering products comprise a significant share of Ukrainian exports to Iran," said the Deputy Prime Minister. 

Tihipko also pointed to the immense potential of cooperation in the field of aircraft engineering. It is known that Iran already produces and operates the An-140 aircraft, and is interested in the purchase and licensed assembly of An-148. "Also there is a mutual interest in cooperation in oil and gas production. 

Iran has huge deposits of minerals, and Ukraine has many years of experience and technologies. Both sides are prepared for mutually beneficial cooperation," Serhiy Tihipko said.

The Iranian Ambassador to Ukraine Akbar Qasemi-Aliabadi also said that Iran is interested in exporting gas to West European countries via territories of Georgia and Ukraine.

"We can renew negotiations on transit of Iranian gas via the territories of Georgia and Ukraine to West European countries," he said, pointing out to a "principally new page" in relations of the two countries.

Re-export of grain crops and steel by using ports of the Caspian Sea and the Persian Gulf was called as another perspective trend of cooperation with Ukraine that will allow substantially increasing goods turnover with the countries of Africa, South Asia and the Persian Gulf countries.

Emphasizing on an advantageous geopolitical situation of Ukraine, Qasemi-Aliabadi pointed out to possibility of cooperation in expansion and setting up new air, automobile and railway corridors.

"Between Iran and many countries in the region, in particular, Iraq, Pakistan, Syria, Afghanistan, as well as with the Latin American countries, joint projects are underway in the fields such as construction of electric stations, dams, oil refineries, setting of railway roads. Ukraine can join these projects on contract basis," he explained.

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