Pakistan may strike commercial deals with Iran

Islamabad, Mar 10: Energy-starved Pakistan may strike multiple commercial deals with Iran on import of 3,000 MW of electricity and construction of a gas pipeline during Iranian President Hassan Rouhani's first official visit here this month.

Defence Minister Khawaja Asif met the Iranian ambassador to Pakistan Mehdi Honardoost to discuss Rouhani's visit.


"Pakistan is looking forward to the scheduled visit from March 25 to 26 of President of Iran and hopes that it would further strengthen relations between the two countries," the ministry quoted Asif as saying.

Officials said that Rouhani will have detailed discussion with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to expand economic and commercial ties. Oil-rich Iran is keen to sell petroleum product, electricity and expediting start of construction of a pipeline bring gas to Pakistan.

"It is hoped that a deal to import 3,000 MW of electricity from Iran will be reached," an official of finance ministry said.

Iran is feeling free to expand commercial ties with other nations after successful implementation of last year's nuclear deal with leading world powers.

Apart for the economic ties, the two sides will also discuss various security issues including tension between Iran and Saudi Arabia and situation in Syria and Iraq.

Sharif last visited Tehran in January to ease tension between Tehran and Riyadh in the aftermath of the execution of activist and Shia cleric, Sheikh Nimr, by Saudi authorities.

It will be first visit by any Iranian president after President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's visit to Islamabad in 2012.


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