Mar 12, 2019 08:33 Asia/Tehran

President Hassan Rouhani has emphasized that Tehran is determined to boost trade with Baghdad substantially, increasing the volume of trade to $20 billion.

Iran Press/Middle East: Speaking at the Economic-Trade Forum of Iran and Iraq late on Monday, President Rouhani voiced Iran's determination to increase the volume of trade with neighboring Iraq from the current $12 billion to about $20 billion.

"The Iranian and Iraqi nations have always been together in recent years in creating security and stability," the official website of Iranian Presidency quoted him as saying, adding, "the Iranian nation and government are very happy that they have been alongside the Iraqi nation and army from the beginning in their fight against terrorism," Mehr News Agency reported.

Referring to the achievements of stability and security in Iraq, Rouhani said, "Iranian businessmen, companies, and trade executives have stood by the Iraqi nation even when the country was insecure."

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He described the meeting of high-ranking delegations of Iran and Iraq as positive, saying: "Today, good agreements were signed by the two countries."

"We are ready to have our tradespeople more active in Iraq and supply the required goods so that we can reach a good balance," he said.

Iran's President added: "It was also decided that visas should remain in place, but that they should be issued free of charge. Obtaining a visa will be free of charge."

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President Rouhani also emphasized that Iran is ready to develop relations in different fields such as energy, and supplying power and natural gas to Iraq."

Stressing that Iran is determined to increase trade between the two countries to the level of $20 billion, he said: "Facilitating banking relations is also important and can create a historic opportunity for the two nations."

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"Today, we are witnessing the closest relations between the two countries," he said, stressing, "this historic opportunity can be a turning point in the relations between Tehran and Baghdad."

Heading a high-ranking politico-economic delegation, President Rouhani embarked on an official three-day visit to Iraq on Monday. This is the first official visit of President Rouhani to Baghdad.

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