Building close relations with Iran remains Pakistan's high priority: Bilawal.

TEHRAN -- Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Tuesday reiterating the country's commitment to strengthen bilateral relations with Iran in diverse areas said that building close relations with Iran remained a high priority for Pakistan.

'Iran is a very important neighbor of Pakistan, one with which we share immutable historic and fraternal bonds. For the Prime Minister, and for me, building close relations with Iran remains a high priority,' the foreign minister said while addressing a joint press conference along with his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir Abdollahian.

'I can say with great satisfaction that we continue to build upon the exceedingly positive and constructive relations enjoyed by our two countries,' he added.

Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, who reached the Iranian capital earlier in the day on a two-day visit at the invitation of Foreign Minister Dr. Amir Abdollahian said during their consultations today, they took stock of the entire gamut of bilateral relations.

The two sides identified ways to take their relationship further to match its true potential, particularly in the areas of trade, investments, connectivity, border management, facilitation for Zaireen, cultural and educational cooperation, and enhancing people-to-people exchanges, he added.

The foreign minister said he conveyed a message of goodwill and cordiality to Iranian brothers and sisters, adding, he was glad that they have come closer to resolving one of the major obstacles in expansion of bilateral trade through operationalizing barter trade mechanism.

He said that the formalization of cross-border exchanges through opening of new border crossings and promotion of trade through border marketplaces were the measures of their shared commitment to provide opportunities for enhanced economic and commercial activities.

'This will greatly help in improving the livelihood and welfare of the people in the border areas,' he added.

The foreign minister said that another significant step towards strengthening bilateral relations was the commitment to strengthen energy cooperation through import of additional electricity from Iran.

He said that the two sides also discussed possibility of exchange of sentenced persons under the existing legal framework to allow them to complete their sentences in their respective countries.


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