Moscow (IP) - Iranian Oil Minister Javad Owji, who is visiting Moscow, said the two countries will continue expanding their bilateral relations.

Iran PressEurope: Owji, who heads the Iran-Russia Economic Cooperation Joint Commission, met with Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak, who is stepping down as the Russian co-chair of the commission. The meeting was also attended by Igor Levitin, an assistant to the Russian president, and Sergei Tsivilev, the Russian energy minister.

Owji praised Novak's efforts during his three-year tenure on the joint commission and expressed Iran's readiness to continue bilateral cooperation with Tsivilev, who will be taking over as the new Russian co-chair.

During the meeting, which was also attended by Iranian Ambassador to Russia Kazem Jalali, Owji said the foundation for expanding bilateral relations was laid during the administration of the late President Ebrahim Raisi, and that process will be consolidated by implementing the signed bilateral contracts.

Owji also expressed appreciation for the condolences offered by Russian President Vladimir Putin and other Russian officials following Raisi's death, noting that Raisi had made relentless efforts to expand relations with neighboring countries and other independent nations like Russia.

In his remarks, Novak said Moscow is determined to continue cooperation with Iran and stressed the need for the speedy implementation of the already signed contracts. He also reiterated Russia's commitment to continue the path the Iranian and Russian presidents laid for reinforcing bilateral relations.

The two sides discussed a range of issues related to bilateral relations, including the acceleration of the completion of the North-South Corridor, which includes the Rasht-Astara railroad project. A memorandum of understanding for the railroad construction was signed in April 2023.