Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif held a meeting with his New Zealand counterpart Murray McCully in Wellington on Sunday afternoon.
Heading a high-ranking delegation, the top Iranian diplomat is in New Zealand as part of a tour of six countries in Southeast Asia and Oceania.
In their meeting, Zarif and McCully stressed the need for the expansion of relations between the two countries, particularly in the economic fields.
Speaking after the get-together, Mr. McCully said, “We are very pleased to welcome Minister Zarif to New Zealand. His visit is the first by an Iranian Foreign Minister in over ten years and allows us to refresh the relationship between our two countries following the implementation of the Iran nuclear deal in January.”
“Our talks today covered a range of Middle East regional security issues relevant to New Zealand’s membership of the UN Security Council, including Syria, Yemen, Iraq and Afghanistan,” he added.
“We have also discussed trade and economic issues, and concluded an arrangement between the New Zealand Export Credit Office and the Export Guarantee Fund of Iran (EGFI). This will help facilitate economic cooperation by giving exporters greater confidence in the trading arrangements between our two countries,” McCully explained.
“I took the opportunity to thank Minister Zarif for the critical role he played in securing the nuclear agreement and encouraged Iran to use this opportunity to reset its relationship with the international community,” he noted.
While in New Zealand, the Iranian diplomat will also meet Prime Minister John Key, the minister of trade, and the minister of primary industries.
Zarif is also going to speak to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs.
(Source: Tasnim, under Creative Commons licence)