Safari advises Europe not to miss economic opportunities further


Tehran : Deputy Foreign Minister for Europe Affairs Mehdi Safari on Wednesday advised the Dutch government and parliament not to miss economic opportunities in Iran any further.

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Safari told the head of Dutch House of Representatives’ Foreign Policy Committee that over the past few years, the level of Iran’s trade exchanges and economic relations and transactions with Asian and East Asian nations rose to dlrs 85 billion from dlrs four billion whereas, in comparison, there has been a decrease in dealings with Europe during this period.

He recommended that the Dutch government and parliament ease restrictions on trade with Iran so that mutual economic cooperation and relations would regain its real level.

Also pointing to regional developments, including in Afghanistan and Iraq, Safari said Iran has many capacities in the region.

Europe should consider prospect of its relations with Iran with far-sightedness and not deprive itself of the abundant facilities for relations with Iran, he added.

“Undoubtedly, the main loser of any restrictive policies will be the European companies and traders,” he added.

Also pointing to Iran’s influential and positive role in maintaining regional stability and calm and guaranteeing energy security, Safari criticized certain European countries for their negative role in regional developments, especially in Afghanistan.

He said that poppy cultivation and production in Afghanistan during the presence of foreign forces is a suspicious and highly dangerous phenomenon.

Pointing to Iran’s nuclear case, he said the IAEA and its head Mohammed ElBaradei’s report have stated that Iran’s nuclear issue is a normal one.

He referred to Majlis elections in Iran on Friday March 14 and said the Majlis will hopefully be dynamic, vibrant and influential with a drastic effect on Iran-Netherlands parliamentary ties.

The head of Dutch House of Representatives’ Foreign Policy Committee for his part honored Iranian people and Iran and hailed the country as a land with rich tradition, history and culture.

He said despite differences in many issues, Iran and the Netherlands can and should hold dialogue.

He pointed to promotion of Iran’s ties with the Asian and East Asian states and stressed the need for balanced economic relations between Iran and Europe.

He underlined the need to promote Iran-Europe ties and said the EU can serve as a bridge between Iran and other countries.