Sino-Iran agreement right move to balance foreign policy

TEHRAN, Mar. 27 (MNA)-Prof. of political science says Iran-China agreement is the correct move by Iran to finally take a major step to balance its foreign policy by recognizing the ongoing transformations in international relations.

Iranian and Chinese Foreign Ministers Mohammad Javad Zarif and Wang Yi signed a comprehensive cooperation agreement between the two countries on Saturday afternoon at the complex of the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tehran.

The two countries began consulting and work on the important cooperation agreement six years ago during President Hassan Rouhani's visit to China.

During Rouhani's visit to China, Iran and China issued statements announcing the promotion of the level of relations between the two countries to a comprehensive strategic partnership.

At the time, the two sides declared that they were ready to negotiate a long-term cooperation document.

Later, Ali Larijani, the former Speaker of the Iranian Parliament went to China and took the lead on the consultations that led to the signing of the agreement today. Larijani was in charge of the talks with the Chinese side on the matter.

The Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi arrived in Tehran late on Friday to hold meetings with his Iranian counterpart Foreign Minister Zarif and President Hassan Rouhani as well as the ex-speaker of the Iranian parliament Larijani.

In the meeting between Mr. Larijani and Mr. Yi, which took place on Saturday morning, the two sides consulted with each other about the expansion of bilateral relations.

This very important political document contains strategic, regional and international cooperation.

To know more about the significance of the agreement and the grounds that it prepares for both country, we reached out to Nader Entessar, professor emeritus of political science from the University of South Alabama.

How do you see the significance of this agreement between the two countries in respect to Iran's efforts to diversify its partners and balancing its relation with western countries?

The Iran-China pact is the most significant agreement between the Islamic Republic and a major international player in more than four decades.  It also is the correct move by Iran to finally take a major step to balance its foreign policy by recognizing the ongoing transformations in international relations.

What will be the economic importance of such an agreement both for Iran and China?

If all the provisions of the agreement are implemented without undue delays and unforeseen glitches, this agreement will help routinize China-Iran economic relations and will allow both countries to devise effective mechanisms to combat Western economic sanctions.  Of course, overcoming the myriad of Western sanctions is an arduous and relatively long process, but the agreement is the right step in that direction.

What is the significance of China's One Road One Belt initiative for the country's ambitions and what is the importance of Iran's role in the country's project?

China's Belt and Road initiative is indeed an ambitious project, and it is arguably the most important initiative undertaken by any major country in the past 50 years.   The scope of this project is wide and encompasses a number of countries.  Iran is an important West Asian piece in the implementation of China's Belt and Road project.  Iran's unique and unmatched geostrategic location and its potential as an indispensable trade artery for China's expanding relations in the Middle East and Central and South Asia will allow Iran to play a key role in China's foreign economic policy. 

Interview by Payman Yazdani

News Code 171451


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