Major Japanese economic mission in Iran to develop bilateral trade
A large Japanese economic mission led by Mitsubishi CEO Nobuyuki Masuda met Monday, July 16, with Iran's Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs Hossein Namazi, the official IRNA news agency reported.
In the course of the meeting, Masuda appealed for Iran to "facilitate the conditions for collaboration" and criticized the time it takes to get approval for a visa, the difficulties in transferring money and the many taxes in Iran.
Masuda also expressed the wish that his country would be able to develop relations with Iran in the fields of oil, petro-chemicals, road construction and small industry.
Namazi stressed that he wanted to see Japanese investment grow in Iran. He added that he hoped economic reforms in Japan would open the country's domestic market to Iranian products.
The delegation, which arrived overnight, will spend several days in the Islamic republic and is due to start talks Tuesday with an Iranian trade delegation led by Ali-Naghi Khamushi at the Iranian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, an official source said.
In Tokyo, the foreign ministry said last week it was "the first time the Japanese government had sent an economic mission of this size to Iran since the Islamic Revolution in 1979".
The 80-member delegation, comprising foreign ministry officials, representatives from the trade and industry ministry as well as representatives from some 30 Japanese companies, will also hold talks with oil firms and petrochemical companies.
The mission was initiated by former Japanese Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori last November when he met Iranian President Mohammad Khatami in Tokyo.
Iran is Japan's third largest oil supplier and at the end of June, Tokyo announced plans to develop the Azadegan oil field in Iran. If the project goes ahead as planned, it could become Japan's largest oil field development. ― (AFP, Tehran)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)