Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi has called for an increase in the volume of commercial transactions between the Islamic Republic and Tajikistan. “The two countries’ officials should make efforts to boost the exploitation of the existing capacities in order to promote the level of transactions,” Salehi told reporters upon arrival in Dushanbe on Wednesday. The Iranian minister put the current value of dealings between the two countries at about $200 million. Salehi said his latest talks with Tajik officials will revolve around regional developments, bilateral economic ties, and Iranian construction projects in the Central Asian nation. He noted the Tehran and Dushanbe have so far held eight joint economic commissions to bolster their commercial relations, and that the ninth commission is expected to be held late in the spring. Salehi further referred to cultural, religious, and historical commonalities between Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan as the only Persian-speaking nations in the world, which “is an efficient factor for the establishment of close and deep ties among the three countries.” The official also called for further popular interaction between the two nations, saying it will lead to stronger economic, cultural, and scientific cooperation between the two sides.