President Hassan Rouhani of Iran told leaders in Yerevan that his government was committed to strengthening relations between Iran and Armenia. He carried this message during meetings on Tuesday with Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and President Armen Sarkissian.
Visiting Armenia to attend the annual council of the Eurasian Economic Union as an observer, Rouhani told Pashinyan during their meeting that for Iran Armenia is an important neighbor and partner and emphasized the need to advance cooperation, especially in the energy sector.
“We attach great importance to the development and expansion of relations with Armenia in all sectors, as a friend and a neighbor,” said Rouhani.
The Iranian leader said that the volume of trade between Iran and Armenia has seen a significantly increased since Pashinyan assumed office and expressed his willingness to further discuss the proposed construction of a hydroelectric power plant in Meghri.
“We are ready to continue to work with your government to develop and implement new programs, expand the volumes of gas for electricity project. At the same time we are ready to implement energy production projects in Armenia via gas, wind and sun. We are interested in conducting regional projects in energy sector and developing infrastructures,” added President Rouhani.
In welcoming Rouhani, Pashinyan also spoke of the need to accelerate some of the ongoing projects with Iran, adding that the Iranian’s participation in the EEU summit in Yerevan will enable the countries to work closely with the framework of the Eurasian economic alliance.
The two leaders also discussed matters of importance to the region, among them the ongoing efforts to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
Similar topics were discussed when Rouhani met with President Sarkissian, who pointed to the centuries-old cooperation and alliance between Iran and Armenia, and expressed hope that this visit will become a conduit for strengthening of ties between the two nations.
The two presidents agreed that Iran and Armenia have not tapped the full potential of cooperation and reaffirmed that the free visa regime that exists between the two countries can greatly contribute to advancing ties and increase tourism.