Iran and Afghanistan ended their second joint economic committee meeting in Kabul here Monday, signing a memorandum of understanding to develop trade and economic relations in various fields.
Iranian Deputy Economy Minister Behrouz Alishiri and his Afghan counterpart Mustafa Mastoor inked the MOU.
The MOU includes boosting cooperation in customs, banking and insurance sectors, as well as fighting smuggling of goods at borders, the report further added.
The Iranian official and his Afghan counterpart stressed the importance of expansion of relations between the two countries in the establishment of peace in the region.
“Iran and Afghanistan economies are complementary for each other; Tehran wishes a stable developed Afghanistan in its neighborhood,” Alishiri underlined.
In response to a question about western sanctions against Iran in the joint conference of Iranian and Afghan official, Iranian deputy economy minister noted that these sanctions like the previous ones are effectless on Iran economy.
Afghanistan and Iran share an extensive history. Afghan-Iranian relations have improved since the fall of the Taliban and Iran has played an active role in Afghanistan’s reconstruction.
Afghanistan shares a long and intertwined history with Iran. There are also deep ties in language, its people and culture. As an eastern dialect of Persian, Dari is the dominant language in
Iran had supported the cause of the Afghan resistance against the Soviet occupation. Iran is also strongly against the American military presence in Afghanistan.
According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), about 1 million Afghan refugees live in Iran.
Since late 2001, the new Afghan government under Hamid Karzai has engaged in cordial relations with Iran. Afghanistan has an embassy in Tehran and a consulate in Mash'had.
Trade between the two nations has increased dramatically since the overthrow of the Taliban in 2001. Iran and Afghanistan plan on building a new rail line connecting Mashhad to Herat and eventually to Kabul. In 2009 Iran was the fourth largest investor in Afghanistan, which is mainly in the construction of roads and bridges as well as agriculture and health care.
Iran exports oil products, cement, construction material, carpets, home appliances, and detergents and imports nuts, carpets, agricultural products as well as handicrafts from Afghanistan. Afghanistan imports 90 percent of its needs, except agricultural products.