The chairman of the Iran-China Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry told ILNA that the economic relations between Iran and China or a possible 25-year agreement should not be viewed politically.
In an exclusive interview with ILNA news agency, Majid Reza Hariri said "Even if there was no revolution in Iran, Iran's trade with China would be the same as now or better than today."
"China is the largest consumer of our goods, so it is natural that a large part of our trade is devoted to energy and other mineral resources," he added.
Referring to Beijing's policies in the Middle East, the Iranian official said that Saudi Arabia and the UAE are opposed to China's policies, but they have more economic ties with Beijing than Iran; adding "Tehran is China's third-largest trading partner in the Middle East."
Explaining some details of the issues on the Iran-China 25-year comprehensive cooperation agreement, which approved by Iran's government, Majid Reza Hariri said "The Iran-China relations is not political and this agreement has been the subject of major political controversy by designers and opponents."
The Iranian Cabinet approved the final draft of a 25-year roadmap for Iran-China strategic relations earlier in June. The main purpose of the plan is to promote bilateral strategic cooperation at regional and international levels using a win-win approach.
"This plan prepares the ground for Iran-China collaboration in key projects and infrastructural development, including the great Belt and Road Initiative. It is an opportunity to attract investment in different economic sectors such as industry, tourism, information technology and communications," President Hassan Rouhani said on June 22.
Iran-China trade has fallen recently due to the outbreak of coronavirus. However, the two sides are taking measures to boost up their trade turnover back to its pre-coronavirus levels.
According to data provided by the General Administration of Customs of the People’s Republic of China, Iran’s exports to China stood at $2.76 billion for the period under review, indicating a 62.2% year-on-year decline.
In return, China exported $3.69 billion worth of commodities to Iran during the same period to register a 1.2% YOY decrease.