Review of Chinese-Iranian Relations

August 25, 2003

I. Political Relations


1. China and Iran established diplomatic relations on August 16, 1971.

2. Sino-Iranian friendly relations and cooperation are developing smoothly. Iranian leaders who visited China are Speaker of Iranian Islamic parliament Rafsanjani (June 1985); President Khamenei (May 1989); Speaker Karubi (December 1991); President Rafsanjani (September 1992); First Vice-President Habibi (August 1994). Chinese leaders who visited Iran are Chairman of National People's Congress Wan Li (May 1990); Premier Li Peng (July 1991); President Yang Shangkun (October 1991); Chairman of National People's Congress Qiao Shi (November 1996), In March 2002, Chinese State Councilor Wu Yi visited Iran. In April 2002, Chinese President Jiang Zemin visited Iran.

II. Trade and Economic and Technological Cooperation

China and Iran started trade relations in 1950. The trade volume in 1998 was ?1.215 billion, among which there was $657 million of exports to Iran and $558 million of imports to China. In 1999, the two-way trade volume was $1.348 billion, including $663 million of exports to Iran and $685 million of imports to China. The major products that China exports to Iran are mechanical and electrical equipments and products of chemical industry. China's main imports from Iran are crude oil. Other imported goods are chrome ore, raw cotton, polyvinyl chloride, synthetic rubber, raisin and pistachio, etc. The bilateral trade volume in 2001 was US$3,313,000,000, of which the Chinese export was US$889,000,000, and import US$2,424,000,000.

Since 1982, Sino-Iranian cooperation on economy and technology has continued to develop. In April 1985, the two countries set up the Joint Committee on Cooperation of Economy, Trade, Science and Technology. Nine sessions have been held up to now. The fields of cooperation include energy, transportation, machinery, building material, mining, coal, chemicals, nonferrous metal, etc. The main projects are subway in Teheran, multi-functional vessels, building of oil tanker, production line of cement plant, 4*32.5 thousand KW thermal power electrical machinery units in Arak, hydroelectric generation equipment, etc.

III. Exchanges and Cooperation on Culture, Education, Science and Technology

In 1983, the two sides signed the agreement on Sino-Iranian Cultural, scientific and technical cooperation in Beijing. In 1986, a project on Sino-Iranian radio-television cooperation was signed in Teheran. Important persons who visited Iran are Vice-Minister of radio-Television Xu Chonghua (November 1986), Deputy Director of National Education Committee Liu Zhongde (November 1986), Director-general of the Xinhua News Agency Mu Qing (December 1986), Director of National Sports Committee Li Menghua (July 1987), Vice-Minister of Culture Liu Deyou (May 1989), Minister of Public Health Chen Minzhang (April 1990). Iranian visitors are Chairman of Iran Audio- Visual Organization Mohammad Hashemi Rafsanjani (July 1985); Assistant Premier and Chairman of Sports Organization Darghahi (July
1986); Minister of Public Health Malandi (April 1987); Vice-Minister of Education Abuthi (June 1987), etc.

IV. Important Agreements

1. Sino-Iranian agreement on cultural, scientific and technical cooperation.

2. Sino-Iranian project on radio-television cooperation.

3. Sino-Iranian agreement on setting up consulate generals in both countries.

4. Governmental Memorandum of mutual exemption of visas.

5. Trade Agreement between Chinese and Iranian government.

6. Memorandum of Understanding between the two Foreign Ministries on the Establishment of A Consultation Mechanism

I. Iran

1. Political Relations and Important Exchanges of Visits

From 20 to 23, Feb, Foreign Minister Tang Jiaxuan visited Iran at the invitation of Foreign Minister. President Seyyed Mohammad Khatemi, Speaker Ali Akabar Nataq Nuri and Vice President Mohammad Hashemi Rafsanjani held separate meetings with him. Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi held discussions with Foreign Minister Tang Jiaxuan.

From 29 May to 1 June, Vice Foreign Minister in charge of Asian-Pacific Affairs visited China. He was met by Foreign Minister Tang Jiaxuan and Vice Foreign Minister Ji Peiding held political consultations.

From June 22 to 26, at the invitation of President Jiang Zeming, President Seyyed Mohammad Khatemi Paid a state visit to China. The two Presidents held discussions. The Iranian President was met respectively by President of CPPCC Li Ruihuan and Premier Zhu Rongji.

2. Economic, Trade cooperation of Scientific and Technological Exchanges

From 21 to 26 July, Vice Director-General of the State Postal Administration Wu Shixiong led a delegation to visit Iran.

From 10 to 16, Nov. At the invitation of the Iranian Metrological Organization, Director-General of the State Metrological Bureau led a delegation to visit Iran and signed the Minute of Talks.

3. Other visits

From 13 to 16, July, at the invitation of the Ministry of Supervision, the President of the Iranian Supervisory Organization Roeisi led a delegation to visit China. He was met by State Councilor Wang Zhongyu. The two sides signed a memorandum of understanding on cooperation.