Russia and Iran have held consultations ahead of two major summits by members of BRICS and Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) nations to call for regional integration.
The BRICS and SCO summits of the world’s major emerging economies will take place on July 8-10 in the Russian city of Ufa.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov said he hoped Iranian President Hassan Rouhani would attend the events. The Russian official met Iran’s Ambassador in Moscow Mehdi Sanaei to discuss preparations for the summits.
According to a statement by the Iranian Embassy, Morgulov hailed Moscow’s relations with Tehran, saying further exchange of economic and political delegations were helpful to expansion of relations in all spheres.
Sanaei stressed the need for increased cooperation for strengthening bilateral and regional relations.
The summits in the capital of the Russian Republic of Bashkortostan will be attended by heads of states and representatives of small and medium enterprises.
Russian media say officials expect as many as 10,000 people to participate in the events.
The New Development Bank, operated by the BRICS states, will hold its first board of directors meeting in Ufa.
The $100 billion bank, with an additional $100 billion currency reserve pool, is operated by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. It is seen on course to challenge the dominance of US-led World Bank and International Monetary Fund.
The BRICS accounts for almost half the world’s population and about one-fifth of global economic output.
Meanwhile, SCO has granted observer status to Iran but is awaiting removal of sanctions on the Islamic Republic to accept it as a full-fledged member.
In May, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Russia was in favor of promoting Iran’s membership in SCO — a Eurasian organization with China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan as its members.