Iran, Turkey pledge to promote economic ties to reach $30bn trade target

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Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (R) shakes hand with Iran's President Hassan Rouhani (L) review a guard of honour during an official welcoming ceremony ahead of their meeting at the Turkish presidential complex in Ankara on December 20, 2018.
Iran and Turkey have agreed to step up their economic cooperation with the aim of reaching a $30-billion target set for their annual trade, voicing concern over the re-imposition by the US of unilateral sanctions against the Islamic Republic, a move which could affect the entire region’s economy.

The agreement was reached at the 5th Meeting of High Council for Iran-Turkey Strategic Cooperation in Ankara chaired by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, according to a joint statement issued at the end of the event on Thursday.

Following the event, Rouhani and Erdogan took part in a joint press conference.

Heading a high-ranking delegation, the Iranian chief executive arrived in Ankara on Thursday for two days of talks with senior Turkish officials on a wide range of issues, particularly bilateral economic relations as well as a Syria peace process that Iran and Turkey– along with Russia — have been mediating since January 2017.

Rouhani is accompanied by a number of Iranian ministers and other senior officials, including Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, Iran’s Petroleum Minister Bijan Zangeneh and Economy Minister Farhad Dejpasand.

During the visit, Tehran and Ankara are scheduled to sign a number of agreements in different fields, including economy, politics and culture.

(This item is being updated.)