Publishe Date: 8:34 PM - 11/9/2016 | Print

Philippines' independent views help advance Tehran-Manila ties: Diplomat

Politics - Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Asia-Pacific Affairs Ebrahim Rahimpour has described the independent views expressed by the Philippines' president as a main contributor in growing Tehran-Manila relations.

Speaking to IRNA, Rahimpour said expansion of ties with Iran is among the Philippine officials' priorities as their new President Rodrigo Duterte follows independent views.

Ending his two-day stay in Philippines on Saturday afternoon, Rahimpour said both countries were determined to hold joint economic commission after 12 years.

After the lifting of anti-Iran sanctions in January, good conditions exist now for cooperation between Iran and Asia including the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the top Iranian diplomat said.

Noting that his visit to Manila aimed at developing bilateral relations, Rahimpour said sanctions imposed on Iran affected other countries like the Philippines as well because they were deprived of the Iranian market.

Now, he added, the Philippine officials are willing to widen ties with Iran to reach the one-billion-dollar exchange level that the two countries used to have in the pre-sanctions era.

The Philippines is ready to invest in Iran's energy fields, Rahimpour said.

Referring to his talks with the Philippine Secretary of Finance Carlos Dominguez, Rahimpour said the two stressed the importance of removing the obstacles on the way of bilateral economic relations.

Rahimpour left the Philippines for Australia on November 5. He will then visit New Zealand.

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