Moscow expects cooperation between the Caspian Five countries to get a boost following the Third Caspian Economic Forum to be held in Tehran, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said.

Iran PressEurope: At a meeting with the foreign ministers of the Caspian states: Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, and Turkmenistan, Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov said: "It is important to note that the Caspian issue is a priority for all of us, as it is regularly discussed by the presidents and heads of government of the Caspian Five. A serious impetus for cooperation in this format was given during the Sixth Caspian Summit in Ashgabat last June and the Second Caspian Economic Forum in Moscow last October."

"We expect further strengthening of this course based on the results of the Third Caspian Economic Forum to be held in Tehran," TASS cited as the top Russian diplomat pointed out.

According to Lavrov, efforts made within the framework of the "Caspian issue" will help solve problems of regional interaction. "Today's meeting is special because we are launching a new ministerial dialogue, which will work within the framework of the mandate agreed at the Ashgabat summit," the minister added.

In particular, the mandate provides for developing five-party cooperation and streamlining procedures therein, as well as moving forward with implementing decisions made at the summits and preparing their agenda and final documents, Lavrov emphasized. 219

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