Japanese Official Calls For Expansion of Ties With Iran

October 10, 2002 - 0:0
TOKYO -- Speaker of Japan's House of Councilors Hiroyuki Kurata, in a meeting with the visiting Iranian Majlis Deputy Speaker Mohammadreza Khatami, in Tokyo on Wednesday called for strengthening of mutual ties.

Kurata, referring to the positive relations between Iran and Japan, described Iran as its most important country in the region.

He stressed the importance of continuing the exchange of parliamentary delegations between the two sides, saying these are effective means of promoting relations and cooperation.

Kurata also praised the approval of a new foreign investment law by the Iranian Parliament as a "positive" move.

He expressed the hope that his country's current oil cooperation with Iran, particularly in the Azadegan oil fields, would reach a successful conclusion.

Mohammadreza Khatami, for his part, made it clear to his Japanese host that Iran expects the Japanese Parliament (Diet) and government to help boost current cooperation as well as play an active role in maintaining stability in the region.

Referring to the keen interest of the Iranian administration and parliament toward expanding relations with Japan, he said the Japanese government and Diet have an important role to play in boosting Japanese investments in Iran.

Khatami said he hopes his country can expand relations with Japan in areas other than oil and gas and can benefit from its superior technology and industrial experience.

Khatami, in the meeting, extended an invitation to the Japanese speaker of the house of councilors to visit Iran.

Khatami, heading a parliamentary delegation, arrived in Tokyo on Monday for a four-day official visit and has since met with Japan's former prime minister, Ryutaro Hashimoto, IRNA reported.