Jakarta (ANTARA News) - President of the Islamic Republic of Iran Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said the development of bilateral relations between Indonesia and Iran have no limit.
"Our strong relationship should be maintained by future generations," said Ahmadinejad when he received a credential letter from Ms. Dian Wirengjurit, the new RI Ambassador for Iran, at the Presidential Palace in Tehran on Sunday (March 18).
According to the press statement received by ANTARA News on Monday (March 19), President Ahmadinejad noted that Indonesia and Iran have a deep relationship, especially in the religious, historical and social fields.
Apart from bilateral relations, Ahmadinejad also acknowledged the role of the two countries in dealing with regional and global issues.
He said the recent bout of global cooperation was only a political game and failed to establish fairness and equality for all countries.
"We need a new world council that is fair, ensures humanism, respects all countries and nations and makes provisions for the equal participation of all countries and nations," he said.
In this regard, he said Indonesia and Iran should have a more important role in building this new world council.
On the other hand, Ambassador Wirengjurit said many opportunities existed to enhance the bilateral cooperation between the two countries, although the recent condition of the global economy had presented many challenges.
He also noted that the interpersonal contact between residents of the two countries was one of the types of cooperation that should be developed. As Islamic countries that have among the largest Muslim populations in the world, Iran and Indonesia hold themselves responsible for promoting Islam as a peaceful religion.
According to data from the RI Embassy in Iran, bilateral relations between the two countries have shown a positive trend in many fields each year. Although Iran has faced pressure from international sanctions, the volume of trade between Iran and Indonesia has increased significantly.
The trade transactions between the two countries in 2011 reached US$1.856 billion, an increase of 51 percent, compared with 2010 when it reached US$1.229 billion. This means that Iran has US$286.3 million in surplus from trade with Indonesia, of which the largest transaction was the export of oil and gas to Indonesia, which reached US$880.727 million, an increase of 140 percent from 2010.
Meanwhile, the non-oil and gas exports from Indonesia to Iran have also shown a positive trend, reaching US$781.5 million, an increase of 22.5 percent over 2010 when it was US$639.3 million.