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Iranian president interview


Rouhani makes friendly gesture towards the US


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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani says Iran and the United States could improve relations if both sides make an effort. He was speaking at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos. Switzerland represents US interests in Iran. (le journal RTS, swissinfo.ch)

In an interview with Swiss public television, RTS, President Rouhani also said that he doubted whether the Syria peace conference in Montreux could reach its objectives.

Rouhani travelled to Davos to persuade foreign investors to return to his country, which has some of the world's biggest oil and gas resources and a market of 76 million people. Tehran wants Western oil companies to revive its giant ageing oilfields and develop new oil and gas fields once sanctions are lifted.

Western sanctions imposed over the nuclear programme have choked Tehran's production - output is down a million barrels per day (bpd) since the start of 2012 to 2.7 million bpd - costing billions in lost revenue. The lifting of sanctions depends on reaching an agreement with world powers on Iran's nuclear programme, which the West believes is aimed at developing weapons.