Jalali said in an interview with the Rossiya-24 TV Channel on Friday that the creation of a joint shipping company was discussed between Iranian and Russian officials as part of efforts to “strengthen” Tehran-Moscow’s shipping fleet.
“There is a need to reinforce our ports; there is a need to strengthen the shipping fleet. Even to create a joint shipping company. I just had a conversation with the First Deputy Prime Minister of Russia Andrey Belousov. Iran’s Minister of Transport also discussed this topic with him. Our Russian counterparts welcomed the creation of a joint shipping company,” the Iranian diplomat said.
Countries need to develop ports and link them “like railroads,” he said. “The potential for freight shipping is huge there.”
Moscow and Tehran are working together on multiple fronts, facilitating bilateral trade and business, expediting the completion of transit routes including the North-South Transit Corridor and its Caspian Sea component, and linking their banking systems to facilitate financial transactions.
The development comes as Iran and Russia plan to open multiple new areas of cooperation by finalizing a long-term strategic cooperation agreement.
According to official reports, trade between the two countries doubled in 2022. Russia invested $2.76 billion during the Iranian calendar year that ended in March, becoming Iran’s largest foreign investor.
The two sides also aim to reduce the use of the dollar in regional and international transactions, joined by several countries, in order to minimize the West’s dominance over the global economy.
The bilateral cooperation comes despite draconian Western sanctions, spearheaded by the US, on both Tehran and Moscow.
Iran has been hit by unilateral US sanctions, imposed by Washington after former president Donald Trump declared an unprovoked withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal in May 2018 and targeted the Iranian economy with what he called a “maximum pressure” campaign.