Kamran Tesori made the remarks in a meeting with Iran’s consular general in Karachi Hassan Nourian.
Karachi, as the state capital and trade center of Pakistan, will benefit significantly from Iran’s partnership, Tesori said, expressing readiness to cooperate with Iranian companies in this regard, IRNA reported.
Nourian for his part said that opening two new border crossings between the two countries over the past two years indicates the firm determination of the Iranian and Pakistani officials to increase the volume of bilateral trade and facilitate business.
He added that Iran-Pakistan special trade exhibition will be held in Karachi soon, which will be a new opportunity for businessmen and the private sectors of the two countries for using each other's capacities.
The two sides reviewed the latest developments related to bilateral relations, including provincial interactions and the achievements made during the recent visit of the high-level Iranian economic delegation to Karachi, as well as holding the first meeting of the joint commercial council of the two countries.
They also discussed developing border markets of Iran and Pakistan on a large scale aiming to meet the mutual needs of the two countries.
The spokesman of the Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration (IRICA) has said Iran exported commodities worth $704 million to Pakistan during the first seven months of the current Iranian calendar year (March 21-October 22).
Morteza Emadi put the weight of exported goods at 1.6 million tons, and named petroleum gases, oil bitumen, industrial dry milk, liquefied natural gas, and liquefied butane as the major exported products.
He also announced that Iran has imported 512,000 tons of commodities valued at $563 million from Pakistan in the first seven months of the present year.
The official named rice, mango, sesame seeds, and banana as the main imported items.
In late October, the Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (ICCIMA) and the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industries (FPCCI) signed three memorandums of understanding (MOU) with the aim of expanding economic cooperation between the private sectors of the two countries.
The MOUs were signed during a visit of an Iranian private sector delegation headed by Gholam-Hossein Shafeie to the Pakistani cities of Karachi and Lahore.
Based on the signed memorandums, the two sides agreed to strengthen comprehensive cooperation between the private sectors of the two countries, to establish a joint trade council of Iran and Pakistan, and to determine a mechanism to resolve trade disputes.
Accordingly, the Iran-Pakistan Joint Trade Council will work together with the Iran-Pakistan Joint Chamber of Commerce to strengthen economic relations between the two neighbors.
ICCIMA pays special attention to barter trade and transit as the basis for the expansion of economic relations between Iran and Pakistan.
On November 19, ICCIMA head Shafeie made the remarks in a meeting with Muhammad Sheryar Khan, the Pakistani consul-general in Mashhad.
He also underlined the significant cultural and historical commonalities between Iran and Pakistan, as well as the opportunity for transit cooperation between the two countries with Russia.
Emphasizing the need to develop Iran-Pakistan trade relations and especially the implementation of agreements related to barter trade, the ICCIMA head said: “The economies of Iran and Pakistan complement each other due to the proximity of the two countries, and they have significant capacities for cooperation in this field, the use of which will lead to a jump in bilateral trade.”
“During the past two years, the government has taken new measures to develop economic relations with Pakistan, and efforts in the field of preferential trade and moving towards free trade have been put on the agenda. However, there are still problems in the implementation of these programs and economic interactions have not been realized as they should have been”, Shafeie further noted.