Iran and Pakistan to focus on boosting bilateral economic ties

An Iranian delegation will visit Pakistan Monday to boost bilateral economic ties, according to media reports.

Tehran: An Iranian delegation will visit Pakistan Monday to boost bilateral economic ties, according to media reports.

The focus of the talks would be on the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline and Iran's electricity exports to Pakistan, Xinhua reported, citing the Tehran Times daily.

The Iranian delegation will be headed by the country's Finance and Economic Affairs Minister Ali Tayyebnia and is expected to attend the two-day meeting of the Iran-Pakistan joint economic committee.

Tayyebnia is also scheduled to meet Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Commerce Minister Khurram Dastagir Khan.

Iran and Pakistan signed an agreement for the construction of a gas pipeline in 1995.

Iran has already built 900 km of the pipeline on its soil and has been waiting for the 700 km Pakistani side of the pipeline to be built.

According to the Tehran Times report, Pakistan's unpaid electricity bills to Iran have exceeded $100 million as Islamabad has failed to settle its debt owing to the US-led banking restrictions against Iran.

Pakistan has been importing 74 MW of electricity per day from Iran since 2002 to feed the border areas of the Baluchistan province under a 12-year agreement, which expires in December 2014.

Pakistan was the eighth biggest importer of Iranian non-oil goods, amounting to $641.7 million in the previous Iranian calendar year, which ended March 20, 2014, according to the Iran Customs Administration.

Iran also imported $320 million of non-oil goods from Pakistan in the same period.

 

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