Commentary (IP) - Iran's Minister of Interior went to Pakistan on Monday to discuss border management as well as security, political, and economic relations with the Pakistani authorities.

Iran PressCommentary: Iran and Pakistan have deep and extensive relations, with various meetings between officials of the two neighboring countries being held regularly.

Iran's Minister of Interior Ahmad Vahidi during the meeting with, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan expressed satisfaction over the positive developments in the ties between the two countries and called for extensive cooperation in different areas.

Vahidi referred to the good ties of the two countries in political, defense, and security fields and stressed the importance of economic relations.  

Iranian President Ibrahim Raisi and his Pakistani counterpart Aref Alavi met on November 28 during a visit to Turkmenistan, where they stressed the need to further develop the bilateral relations.

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The development of trade with neighboring and regional countries is one of the foreign policy priorities of the 13th Iranian administration therefore the Iranian and Pakistani authorities signed three agreements on November 7 to promote trade relations.

The development of economic and trade relations in a 5-year period, designing a mechanism for bartering, removal of non-tariff barriers, exhibition cooperation, the extension of the 5-year trade cooperation program until 2027, and creation of a common border market are the most important provisions of the three agreements.

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With the inauguration of the Islamabad-Tehran-Istanbul (ITI) railway project called the ECO Container Train, on December 21, the grounds were prepared for further development of bilateral trade between Iran and Pakistan.

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Now given the developments in the region, including the situation in Afghanistan, which has long borders with Iran and Pakistan, there are common concerns about the spread of insecurity and the influence of extremist groups in Iran and Pakistan, an issue which requires the establishment of joint mechanisms.

In recent years, joint border, intelligence, and security cooperation between the two countries has been effective in the fight against extremist groups and maintaining border security.

Increasing security between Iran and Pakistan is also a necessity for the successful implementation of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, CPEC, which is part of the 'One Belt-One Road' project.

With more than 900 kilometers of common border, obviously, Iran and Pakistan have many interests and concerns in common; they have religious, cultural, and customs commonalities, and due to their proximity, trade costs between the two countries are relatively low and serve the interests of both parties.

Border terminals, rail transport, roads, and markets are a good opportunity to help develop bilateral economic cooperation.

"According to the West's interventionist approach to the region, especially spoiling the discussion of cooperation between neighbors, the visit of the Minister of Interior of the Islamic Republic of Iran to Pakistan is an example of Tehran-Islamabad-Iran convergence for regional security and common interests," said a Pakistani defense expert. 


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