TEHRAN, Oct. 22 (Press Shia) – Iran believes that expansion of cooperation with the countries in the Southeast Asia is pivotal for the future of the country’s economy.
Thanks to removal of the anti-Iran sanctions in January 2016, the obstacles on the way of Iran’s ties with other countries, particularly in the Southeast Asia region, have been eliminated.
In an indication of the great significance Tehran gives to promote its relations with that region in all aspects, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani President Rouhani started a three-nation tour of Southeast Asia on October 5, which took him to Vietnam, Malaysia and finally Thailand.
During Rouhani’s two-day stay in Hanoi, two agreements on cooperation were linked by the two countries’ officials.
Also in Malaysia as the second destination of his Asian tour, Rouhani and the Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak stressed importance of boosting mutual ties in the political, cultural, scientific and economic arenas.
After arriving in Bangkok, the Iranian President and the senior Thai officials held talks on different issues, voicing readiness to open a fresh chapter in mutual cooperation.
The Iranian President, during his address to the second Summit of the Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD) in Bangkok, stressed that Asia’s power is dependent on self-confidence and a shared will for convergence.
New Chapter of Ties
In a meeting with Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-o-cha, President Rouhani said that Tehran and Bangkok governments are determined to open ‘new chapter’ in ties.
Citing Thailand as Iran’s economic communication bridge in east of Asia, Iranian president also indicated resolve of the two governments to help access of one another to the markets of east, west and central Asia to Europe, adding the governments of the two countries are fully determined to expand close relations in political, economic, cultural and scientific arenas.
Describing the Islamic Republic of Iran is as the most secure country in the region with transport facility to regional market of 400 million people, he added the country could serve as a gate for trade of East Asia and Thailand with the central Asia, the Caucasus and Europe as well.
Describing terrorism, violence and extremism as the global dilemma, Iranian president call for expansion of cooperation among all countries to tackle terrorism.
Meanwhile, Chan-o-cha said that the Thai government is determined to amend close relations with Iran, adding Thai companies are fully ready to cooperate with the Iranian firms.
Chan-o-cha also called for implementation of all agreements inked between the two countries, expressing hope that cooperation on science and culture would develop in parallel with economic cooperation.
Shared Will for Convergence:
Addressing the second Summit of ACD in Bangkok, Iranian President said that Asia’s power is dependent on self-confidence and a shared will for convergence.
‘We must open our markets, engage in greater economic interaction, start domestic structural reform, move towards greater transparency and engage in extensive coordination on setting policy; and by doing so, take long strides to improve the quality of life for our citizens and elevate the standing of Asia on the world stage,’ President Rouhani said.
He reiterated that today, all acknowledge that no global issues could be addressed without close cooperation of Asian powers.
In recent years, the Southeast Asia has been experiencing constant progress and the entire world, including Western nations are seeking to secure their foothold in East and Southeast Asia.
Given the fact that attention to the East is among the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei’s strategic policies, Iran should not stay behind in amending relations with Southeast Asia.
‘Asia plays a pivotal role in global efforts aimed at resolving such major issues as climate change, environmental crisis, social problems, including refugees, illiteracy and poverty; and the role of Asian states in promoting collective security is indispensable,’ Rouhani has said.
Citing the long and rich history of Asian civilizations as a priceless heritage, President Rouhani said greater contact and cohesion between our nations translates into greater cultural growth, which is vital for the long term security and stability of the continent.
Iran is an integral part of Asia and a gateway that connects East to West, President Rouhani said, adding: “We have our roots in Asia and our history, culture and arts have been shaped by this ancient continent. We are committed to remain with Asia and continue to define our identity as Asians.”