The Islamic Republic's ties with Italy, as an influential European country, can help to build trust with Europe, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said, Press TV reported on Dec. 22.
In a Sunday meeting with visiting Italian Foreign Minister Emma Bonino in Tehran, Rouhani expressed Iran's readiness to promote relations with Italy to the "highest level possible."
"The current [level of] relations between Iran and Italy does not meet the expectations of both nations and the existing capacities of both countries must be used to expand ties," the Iranian president stated.
He added that Italy has been an important partner for the Islamic Republic of Iran and has so far acted as the "gateway for Iran's interaction with Europe."
Iranian president noted that meeting Italy's energy demands has always been a top priority in Tehran-Rome ties.
Iran is ready to boost bilateral cooperation with Italy in the fields of industry, energy, environment, and tourism as well as scientific and cultural exchanges, Rouhani said.
The Italian foreign minister, for her part, expressed her country's readiness to bolster cooperation with Iran in economic, industrial, energy, tourism and scientific arenas.
Bonino added that Rome is keen to improve its ties with Tehran to serve its interests.
She expressed hope that Italy would help improve interaction between Iran and Europe and boost cooperation with the Islamic Republic on regional issues.
Italy believes that Iran plays a very important role in resolving regional issues through political approaches, the Italian foreign minister added.
Heading a high-ranking political delegation, the Italian foreign minister arrived in Tehran on an official two-day visit on Saturday to hold talks with senior Iranian authorities.
Bonino is the first Italian foreign minister to visit Iran in nearly a decade.