DUSHANBE , January 17, Asia-Plus / - Monday afternoon, Tajik President Emomali Rahmonov left for Tehran atop a high-ranking delegation.  Foreign Minister Talbak Nazarov, State Adviser for the Tajik President for International Matters Erkin Rahmatulloyev, Finance Minister Safarali Najmuddinov, Economy and Trade Minister Hakim Soliyev and Chairman of the National Bank of Tajikistan Murodali Alimardonov are accompanying him on this trip to Iran , according to presidential press service.  

On January 16, President Rahmonov told journalists in Dushanbe that he was going to pay an official visit to Tehran , where three Tajik ministers have worked for more than a week and prepared a package of documents.  According to the president, the negotiations in Tehran are aiming to discuss the construction of Sangtuda-2 hydropower plant and the Shahriston tunnel in Tajikistan .  “We intend to discuss in Iran the issues related to restructuring Tajikistan ’s debt to Iran as well the issues of transport communications and the construction of the Anzob tunnel,” President Rahmonov said.     

During his two-day visit to Tehran , Rahmonov is attending a conference on Iran-Tajikistan economic cooperation and hold talks with Iranian officials.  Rahmonov''s visit is taking place at the invitation of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Upon arrival at Mehrabad international airport President Rahmonov was welcomed by Iranian Commerce Minister Massoud Mir-Kazemi upon arrival at Mehrabad International Airport but an official welcome ceremony also awaits him in the presence of President Ahmadinejad on Tuesday.

During his stay here, Rahmonov is scheduled to meet with President Ahmadinejad, Majlis Speaker Gholam-Ali Haddad-Adel, Expediency Council Chairman Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki.  The two sides are expected to discuss bilateral, regional and international developments.

A trade turnover between Tajikistan and Iran in 2005 amounted to US$130 million.  Tajikistan ''s main exports to Iran were aluminum and cotton while its imports were mainly edible oil, foodstuff, chemicals, industrial and agricultural machineries, electric devices and detergents.

Iran has participated in Tajikistan ''s development through investment in the country, particularly in the construction of the Anzob tunnel and Sangtuda-2 power plant.

Political experts predict the visit by Rahmonov to Iran would open a new chapter in economic and infrastructure cooperation between Tehran and Dushanbe .