Pakistn’s President Asif Ali Zardari held a meeting with President Ahmedinejad who arrived in Islamabad on Feb 16 for a two-day trilateral summit. The two countries discussed ways towards augmenting political and economic cooperation and strengthen bilateral ties.
Meanwhile, President Asif Zardari has assured Iran that the country will not extend any support, including bases, to the US, if it decides to attack Iran.
“Pakistan and Iran need each other and no foreign pressure can hinder their ties,” Zardari said.
Referring to the IP project, he said Islamabad will not tolerate Washington’s stance and will not stand its dictation on whom it can and cannot trade with.
Iranian President said “They seek to create divisions and tensions among regional countries. They don’t want us to make progress.”
The multi-billion dollar Iranian gas pipeline project was also discussed with the delegates from both sides. Despite international sanctions against Iran, Pakistan has assured President Ahmedinejad of its commitment to the gas pipeline and electricity project. However, Pakistan has failed to provide any timetable for the completion of the projects. The two sides also discussed wide range of other issues including energy swap, barter trade agreements, removing tariff and non-tariff barriers and improved border coordination for facilitating businessmen from both countries.
Iran also wants to procure of 20,000 tones of wheat from Pakistan using currencies other than the dollar or gold for payments, as a way around the international sanctions. Iran is offering to increase bilateral trade to $10 billion from the present $1.5 billion.