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|Thursday, February 08, 2001, updated at 08:23(GMT+8)|
Iraq, Jordan Agree on Draft Free Trade AgreementIraq and Jordan have agreed on the draft of a free trade agreement which will be formally signed by the two governments later, Iraqi Trade Minister Mohammad Mehdi Salah said Wednesday.
"We have agreed on the clauses of an agreement to set up a free trade zone," Salah was quoted by the official Iraqi News Agency (INA) as saying.
Salah made the announcement after his talks with visiting Jordanian counterpart Wasif Azir, who arrived here by plane last Saturday evening.
For his part, Azir, at the end of his visit to Baghdad, said the trip was "successful" and expressed the belief that a free trade agreement would further strengthen bilateral trade relations.
Azir also reiterated Jordan's call for lifting the decade-old United Nations sanctions, imposed on Iraq for its invasion of Kuwait in 1990.
Iraq has called on all Arab countries, including Jordan, to sign a free trade agreement with it following its free trade accords with Egypt and Syria last month. Both deals called for an end to all customs and export or import licenses to establish a common Arab market.
This has been regarded as another move by the Iraqi government to challenge the sanctions regime.
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