By Kamila Aliyeva
The Islamic Republic of Iran and Central Asian country of Kyrgyzstan are keen to develop bilateral ties and cooperation in various areas.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, who is on an official visit to Bishkek, said that his country is ready to help Kyrgyzstan with the construction of hydropower plants.
This was stated at a joint press conference with his Kyrgyz counterpart Erlan Abdyldaev held on April 19.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran has a great deal of experience in the construction of dams and plants, and can provide valuable assistance to the Bishkek government in this regard,” he added.
The top Iranian diplomat expressed Tehran’s readiness to boost relations with Bishkek in all sectors.
He also stressed that Iran could cooperate with Kyrgyzstan in the pharmaceutical sector and expressed Tehran’s willingness to transfer technology to Kyrgyz manufactures.
Abdyldaev, in his turn, said that his country was keen to expand ties with Iran in the banking, mining, light industry and power plant construction sectors.
During the talks, the Iranian and Kyrgyz sides agreed to hold constant consultations on regional problems, including terrorism, extremism and drug smuggling.
Separately, Zarif also held talks with Kyrgyzstan's Prime Minister Sooronbay Jeenbekov on bilateral ties and regional and international developments.
Later, Zarif had a meeting with Kyrgyz President Almazbek Atambayev.
During the talks, the Kyrgyz leader called for closer economic relations between Tehran and Bishkek, saying efforts must be made to remove the obstacles to bilateral trade.
The importance of further development of the political dialogue, the need to implement concrete practical steps for cooperation in the banking sector, in the field of infrastructure and construction, investments and trade was underlined.
The two sides noted that mutual exchange of visits at the highest level and subsequent intensification of bilateral contacts show a qualitatively new stage of the relationship between Kyrgyzstan and Iran and open up opportunities for the full realization of their potential.
Heading a politico-economic delegation, the Iranian foreign minister on Monday started a tour of three Central Asian countries to expand the Islamic Republic’s ties with Turkmenistan, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan in different fields, especially the economic sector.
In 2016, the trade turnover between Iran and Kyrgyzstan amounted to $14 billion and saw an increase compared to 2015.
In December 2016, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani paid an official visit to Kyrgyzstan, signing an agreement on a 10-year cooperation program.