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Iran To Host Caspian Summit Next Year

December 15, 2006, RFE/RL -- Iranian Foreign Minister Manuchehr Mottaki today said the next summit of the five Caspian Sea states would take place in Tehran in the first quarter of 2007.

Mottaki, who is on a visit to Astana, said that Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbaev has already confirmed that he will attend.

The five Caspian nations -- Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Turkmenistan -- have been negotiating a comprehensive sea border agreement since 1994, but the talks have so far brought no breakthrough.

Mottaki told reporters today that Iran will soon open a consulate in the Kazakh Caspian Sea port of Aktau and that Kazakhstan will in turn set up a consulate in the northern Iranian town of Gorgan.

The Iranian envoy has discussed joint economic projects with Kazakh officials, including the construction of a petrochemical plant in western Kazakhstan and an oil refinery in northern Iran.

The two countries are also considering building a grain terminal on Iran's Caspian Sea coast.

(Kazinform, Kazakhstan Today, IRNA, Fars)

Copyright (c) 2006 RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

... Payvand News - 12/16/06 ... --

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