Zarif holds ‘fruitful talks’ with Chinese counterpart

October 11, 2020 - 0:9

TEHRAN – Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Saturday he held ‘fruitful talks’ with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi.

“Fruitful talks in beautiful Tengchong with my friend Wang Yi on Iran-China Comprehensive Strategic Partnership,” Tweeted Zarif on Saturday evening.

The foreign minister arrived in the southern Chinese province of Yunnan at the head of a high-ranking delegation on Friday.

Earlier on Thursday, spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran Saeed Khatibzadeh said Zarif’s two-day visit was “in line with close consultations between the Islamic Republic of Iran and China.”

Zarif also said that they “rejected U.S. unilateralism and U.S. attempts to create unipolar world,” adding that Iran and China “agreed on strengthening our ties including 25-year plan, regional cooperation, preserving JCPOA & vaccine collaboration.”

Zarif was referring to a 25-year strategic partnership plan between Iran and China that was approved by Iran in June but still awaits the Chinese approval.

Neither Iran nor China did formally give many details about the plan. However, some details of the 25-year partnership have been leaked to the press. According to the leaks, China will invest a whopping $400 billion in various Iranian sectors including oil and gas. In exchange, Iran will ensure steady energy supplies to China for a period of 25 years at a discounted rate.

As Zarif left Iran for China, an assistant to him, said the foreign minister was going to discuss the partnership plan, expressing hope that the plan would play a major role in facilitating the trade between Tehran and Beijing.

“We hope that Mr. Zarif’s visit to China will be a major step toward institutionalizing the 25-year cooperation document between the two countries, which will be a good basis for boosting economic relations,” said the assistant, adding, “Concerning the 25-year cooperation plan between Iran and China, there have been continuous contacts between the experts of the two countries since last year.”

The assistant, Reza Zabib, also said Zarif will discuss the efforts to produce the Covid-19 vaccine.