Iran has asked Belarus to plant its territory with forests to help boost its economy, the former Soviet republic’s Forestry Ministry said on Monday.
The request was made during talks in Minsk between Iranian Minister of Industry, Mine and Commerce Mehdi Ghazanfari and Belarusian Forestry Minister Mikhail Amelyanovich.
Only about one-tenth of Iranian territory is forested, but Ghazanfari said Iran is looking to change this.
Ghazanfari also proposed setting up a joint timber processing plant.
“[The Iranian side] is interested in solving this problem and is ready to create conditions to facilitate the work of Belarusian specialists in the event of their possible assistance in the forestation of Iranian deserts,” the ministry said.
Nearly half of Belarus is covered in woods. The nation exported timber to 22 countries in 2010, but Iran was not among its top customers, according to the ministry's website.