Iran can feed Bangladesh with its natural gas supply if the latter joins the Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI) gas pipeline project, said Iranian Ambassador to Bangladesh Dr Abbas Vaezi.
The ambitious $1.5 billion project for laying 1,620-mile (2700 km) pipeline now being set up to supply natural gas to Pakistan and India is expected be completed by 2018.
The pipeline could be extended further, if Bangladesh is willing to join the Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI), said Vaezi opined.
The Iranian envoy said so at a press meet held at the National Press Club, organised by the Diplomatic Correspondents Association of Bangladesh (DCAB) on Tuesday.
Iran is willing to provide improve energy capability of Bangladesh and provide technical cooperation to establish oil refinery for crude oil imports from the Persian Gulf, Abbas Vaezi said further.
Iran will take the bilateral relationship with Bangladesh on economic cooperation to new heights once the global superpowers and United Nations (UN) economic sanctions are withdrawn, he said.
After 12 years of negotiation six global superpowers (US, UK, France, Russia, China, Germany) and the UN reached an agreement with Iran on the nuclear issue on July 14 in Vienna of Austria.
As per the agreement the economic sanctions on Iran will be withdrawn soon, said the Iranian envoy.
Iranian ambassador said: "As the sanctions on Iran are being lifted, it can usher in a new era for Bangladesh-Iran ties. Iran is very eager to deepen the ties with Bangladesh. I'll take necessary initiatives to deepen the ties."
"Iran makes the world's best carpet. Bangladesh produces jute, the main raw material used for weaving carpets. So, Iran can easily take good quality jute from Bangladesh."
Jute, leather products, toiletries, handicrafts and packaged foods are in high demand in Iran's market and Bangladesh is vying to enhance trade and commerce with Iran.
He said the issues related to cooperation in the energy sector would be discussed with Bangladesh State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources when he visits Iran this year.
Bangladesh Foreign Ministry is working on how Bangladesh can benefit from these trade and energy sectors of Iran.
Under the government's initiative to expand Bangladesh's market in Iran a team will arrive in Dhaka later this month. It is also expected that during the official visit, a cultural exchange deal will also be signed with Iran.
Bangladesh Foreign Secretary Shahidul Huq on Tuesday said separately, "Lifting of western sanctions on Iran throws up a great opportunity for Bangladesh and has already welcomed the deal."
"After the historic deal, our trade and commerce with Iran will significantly increase. Of course it will take 7-8 months for total withdrawal of the sanctions. Then we (Bangladesh) can take a decision on areas to improve our ties," the foreign secretary said.