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Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif’s tour of Africa takes him to South Africa, Uganda and Niger.
Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif’s tour of Africa takes him to South Africa, Uganda and Niger.

First Stop: Promoting Trade With "Reliable Partner" South Africa

The foreign minister is accompanied by a political team and an economic mission, comprising representatives of state and non-state firms and enterprises active in various domains, including industry, agriculture, trade, banking and technology

First Stop: Promoting Trade With "Reliable Partner" South Africa

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Sunday led a high-level economic delegation to South Africa, which his spokesperson described as a "reliable trade partner".
South Africa marks the first stop on his three-leg African tour that would also take him to Uganda and Niger respectively.
He was to hold talks with South African President Jacob Zuma, his counterpart Maite Emily Nkoana-Mashabane and other members of Zuma's Cabinet.
Outlining Zarif's planned trip in a talk with Fars News Agency, Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qasemi said the visit comes at Nkoana-Mashabane's invitation.
"The 13th meeting of Iran-South Africa Economic Commission is slated to convene during the foreign minister's visit, in which he is accompanied by a political team and an economic mission, comprising representatives of state and non-state firms and enterprises active in various domains, including industry, agriculture, trade, banking and technology," Qasemi said.
He added that a series of cooperation documents would be signed between the two sides' economic delegations.
"The documents, which have been under negotiation with South Africa, over the past few days will most likely be finalized and ready for signing by early Monday," he said.
The 12th meeting of Iran-South Africa Economic Commission was hosted by Tehran in May 2015, amid Iran's intense negotiations with the six major powers that led to a landmark nuclear deal in July of the same year.
About three months after the agreement went into force in January 2016, Zuma traveled to Tehran to boost political, trade and investment ties, in the absence of international anti-Iran sanctions lifted under the nuclear pact in return for temporary curbs on Tehran's nuclear program.
During Zuma's visit, the first by a South African president since 1999, the two countries signed eight agreements on cooperation in trade, industries, investments, agriculture, water resources and oil industry research and development.
They also called for strengthening intelligence cooperation in the fight against terrorism.
"The lifting of nuclear-related sanctions against Iran provides immense potential for closer commercial and investment cooperation between South Africa and Iran," President Hassan Rouhani said after a meeting with Zuma at the time.
The latest milestone in the stepped-up bilateral diplomacy came in early September this year, when the top South African lawmaker visited Iran to meet top Iranian officials, including Rouhani.
Rouhani told South African National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete that he was pleased with the massive expansion of relations between the two countries since the apartheid regime in the African country was ousted.
Iran cut ties with the white supremacist regime in South Africa right after the Islamic Revolution of 1979 and resumed relations only after Nelson Mandela was elected as its first black president in 1994.

 

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