BEIJING, Feb. 15, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — In the face of complex changes in the world, times and history, relations between China and Iran have withstood the tests of various international vicissitudes.
During the talks between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi on Tuesday in Beijing, both leaders committed to deepening and upgrading the two countries’ partnership.
China will unswervingly develop friendly cooperation with Iran to promote China–Iran comprehensive strategic partnership for new development, Xi told Raisi, who is paying his first state visit to China.
For his part, Raisi said the time-tested friendship has become even firmer as time goes by.
Sincere strategic partners
China and Iran have supported each other, worked together to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, consolidated strategic mutual trust and made steady progress in practical cooperation, which has promoted common interests and safeguarded international fairness and justice, Xi said.
The country has remained Iran’s biggest trading partner for years. From January to August in 2022, the bilateral trade volume between China and Iran was $11.16 billion, a year-on-year increase of 19 percent, of which China’s exports to Iran were $6.214 billion, a year-on-year increase of 24 percent, and China’s imports were $4.946 billion, a year-on-year increase of 14 percent.
In 2022, the two sides jointly announced the launch of the implementation of the 25-year comprehensive cooperation plan, agreeing to step up cooperation on energy, infrastructure, production capacity, science and technology, and medical and health care.
The two leaders vowed to implement the Iran-China Comprehensive Cooperation Plan well at the meeting and called for strengthened cooperation in various fields, such as trade, infrastructure and agriculture.
Raisi also called for Chinese enterprises to visit Iran for investment and business and said he expects more Chinese tourists to visit.
Practice true multilateralism
Maintaining stability in the Middle East is critical to the well-being of countries and people in the region; it is also crucial to maintaining world peace, promoting global economic development, and ensuring a stable supply of energy.
In September 2022, the 22nd meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) signed a memorandum on Iran’s membership in the SCO, and Raisi issued an order for implementing the law on Iran’s membership in the SCO on February 7, 2023.
Supporting and actively participating in the Belt and Road Initiative, the Global Development Initiative and the Global Security Initiative proposed by China, Raisi said Iran will maintain good cooperation with organizations occasions, such as the SCO, and jointly safeguard regional and world peace and stability.
Xi said China is willing to work with Iran to strengthen communication and coordination in multiple platforms such as the UN and the SCO, practice true multilateralism and safeguard the common interests of developing countries.
China will continue to jointly build the Belt and Road cooperation with Iran, aiming to step up interconnectivity and expand people-to-people and cultural exchanges, Xi added.