It is needed to advance the Belarusian-Iranian cooperation to a brand-new level, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko said as he met Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Islamic Republic of Iran to Belarus Mohammad Reza Saburi on the occasion of the completion of his diplomatic mission in Belarus on 15 December.
“You know perfectly well and our country knows well that we pay a lot of attention to the cooperation with Iran. I can even say that the coming year 2017 will be a decisive one in our relations. We always declare that we are strategic partners, that there are no contradictions, that we are ready to cooperate in any fields, and that there are no forbidden topics, but the level of our cooperation leaves much to be desired. Even more than that, it is lagging behind our potential. We will have to do a lot,” Alexander Lukashenko stressed.
At the same time, the head of state remarked that the sides made much progress. In particular, they have developed a roadmap of bilateral cooperation for 2016-2017. “It is needed to implement this plan,” the President stated. “Why am I so concerned about our cooperation? If Belarus and Iran use at least a half of the countries’ opportunities, this will be the most efficient cooperation project. You need everything that is made in Belarus. We need your products. Let’s work together, set up joint ventures in Belarus and Iran. Let’s finally show that we can cooperate.”
Alexander Lukashenko said that before the meeting of the presidents of the two countries it is essential to revise the previous decisions. “We need to focus on promising projects and the areas of interest in our cooperation roadmap. There is no other way,” the Belarusian leader is convinced. “Therefore, I would like you to inform the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Iran and the President of Iran about my concerns. We are ready to welcome the President of Iran at any time. I think that it will be a landmark meeting which will begin a new stage in our cooperation.”
Mohammad Reza Saburi thanked the head of state for the meeting and noted that he shares the President’s position. “My colleagues and I agree with you that we need to step up efforts to use our potential in full,” he said. “Iran is committed to raising the level of bilateral relations with Belarus.”