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Iran’s Qalibaf stresses importance of expanding cooperation with Venezuela

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Iranian Parliament speaker Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf (R) meets with Venezuelan Foreign Minister Felix Plasencia (L) in Tehran on October 18, 2021. (Photo by IRNA)

Iranian Parliament Speaker Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf has stressed the necessity of deepening economic cooperation between the Islamic Republic and Venezuela.

Qalibaf said the governments and parliaments of Iran and Venezuela need to pave the way for enhancing bilateral ties in the fields of tourism and agriculture as well as technical and engineering services “through bringing the private sectors of the two countries closer”.

He made the remarks during a meeting with Venezuelan Foreign Minister Felix Plasencia in Tehran on Monday.

“The political relations between the two countries are at a good level, thus we should put our efforts into boosting the economic ties accordingly,” Qalibaf said.              

He named the far distance between Iran and Venezuela as one of the challenges for enhanced bilateral economic ties but stressed that problems can be resolved amid mutual keenness to boost cooperation.

Stressing that the parliamentary friendship groups in the two countries have become more active, the parliament speaker said, “We are self-sufficient in many military and civilian industries and we can ensure many of our needs relying on our indigenous knowledge.”

Plasencia expressed his country’s willingness to further expand ties with Iran in various fields.

He stressed that the two countries’ parliaments maintain good relation, expressing hope that the parliament speakers of the two countries would meet in the near future.

The Venezuelan minister also announced that a meeting of a joint commission on economic cooperation would be held in the coming months to strengthen economic relations between Iran and Venezuela.

Nations’ resolve stronger than that of superpowers: Rezaei

Also on Monday, Plasencia met Mohsen Rezaei, the economic deputy of Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi.

Noting that Tehran and Caracas are determined to boost their economic ties, Rezaei said Iran and Venezuela proved that “nations’ resolve is stronger than that of superpowers”, adding that the mutual cooperation between the two countries serves as “a model for friendly countries".

Noting that the United States is “not reliable at all”, Rezaei said Iran and Venezuela can overcome difficulties with cooperation with each other.

Both Iran and Venezuela have managed to withstand the economic pressures of unprecedented US sanctions while gradually finding ways to get round them.

Earlier on Monday, Plasencia separately met Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi and Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian.

Amir-Abdollahian said Iran and Venezuela are set to sign a 20-year cooperation agreement during Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s upcoming visit to Tehran.

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