Rouhani sees no hurdle to mutually beneficial ties between Tehran, Helsinki 

October 26, 2016 - 21:38

TEHRAN - With the removal of sanctions against Iran at the back of the nuclear deal, President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday he will see no hurdle to expansion of all-encompassing relations with Helsinki.

“Sanctions which used to be a main hurdle to expanding bilateral ties are now removed,” Rouhani told visiting Finnish President Sauli Niinistö, who arrived here at the head of a large business delegation. 
Rouhani saw an upgrade in ties with the north European country in line with Tehran’s interest in stronger contacts with EU member states. 
“During today’s discussions, we addressed the [existing] capacity of relations between Iran and the European Union, especially after the JCPOA and the European side’s willingness to expand [bilateral] economic, scientific, and technological relations.”
Rouhani further referred to the fertile ground for mutually beneficial cooperation between Tehran and Helsinki. 
“Today, there are good potentialities and grounds for investment in different sectors of industry, energy, transportation, and telecommunication in Iran, and we welcome Finnish companies’ participation and investment in these areas,” he was quoted as saying in the meeting. 
Among other cooperation fields, the president referred to tourism, health, forestry, and environment, where the two can establish effective ties. 
However, for the two sides to achieve the goals, strong banking connections are required, a point Rouhani was remindful of. 
“Boosting correspondent banking connections between Iranian and Finnish banks is the most urgent need to propel economic relations between the two sides.”
He also highlighted the importance of consultation between Tehran and Helsinki on key regional and international issues such as terrorism, extremism, and drug smuggling.
“We believe there are political solutions to regional problems, and all should help contain terrorism.”
For his part, the Finnish head of state hailed the long-standing cooperation between the two nations, saying, “Iran was one of the first countries to recognize Finnish independence.”
“I believe that now, the Islamic Republic of Iran and Finland will cooperate further,” said Niinistö, describing the nuclear deal between Iran and the P5+1 states as an important milestone.  
 “I have brought with me a large business delegation and they have been very satisfied with their discussions with their colleagues from Iran,” he said.
There are various areas of potential cooperation between the two sides, including energy, clean tech, information and communications technology (ICT) as well as forestry.



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