Iranian President Rouhani welcomes Iraqi President Salih to Tehran

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Published on 17 Nov 2018, 22:06
Iraq's President Barham Salih began a visit to Iran on Saturday, where he pledged to improve relations less than two weeks after the United States restored oil sanctions that had been lifted under the 2015 nuclear deal.
Iran, which has had major influence over Iraq since the 2003 U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein, is hoping to maintain exports to its neighbor despite the renewed sanctions. Iraq is Iran’s second-largest market after China, buying everything from food and machinery to electricity and natural gas.
At a joint briefing after their meeting, Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani said they discussed increasing trade in electricity and oil products and the establishment of free trade zones along the border. He said they also discussed joint oil projects and improving transport links between the two countries.
Trade between the two countries was some $7 billion in 2017, and they have vowed to boost it to $8.5 billion this year. Rouhani said it could eventually reach $20 billion a year. (AP)
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