By Kamila Aliyeva
The twelfth meeting of the Intergovernmental Commission on trade-economic and scientific-technical cooperation between Uzbekistan and Iran was held at the Trade Development Organization under the Ministry of Industry, Mines and Trade of Iran in Tehran.
Within the framework of the visit of the Uzbek delegation to Iran, an Uzbek-Iranian trading house of Uzsanoatexport JSC was opened and a business forum was held with the participation of officials and entrepreneurs from both sides, the press service of the Uzbek Ministry of Foreign Trade reported.
As a result of the forum, a package of export contracts for the supply of textiles, legumes, and dried fruit and vegetable products was signed.
The Uzbek and Iranian sides discussed a number of issues, including a draft bilateral trade agreement providing for the granting of a preferential customs regime for limited commodity positions from each side.
The parties agreed on the preparation and mutual exchange within one month of lists of goods for inclusion in the draft document, as well as the organization of regular negotiations in Tashkent in mutually agreed terms.
They also agreed to establish a business council with the participation of the Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Uzbekistan and Iran, which will help establish close partnership relations between small and medium-sized businesses of both countries, as well as assist in solving financial, legal and other issues related to their activities.
The preparation for signing a memorandum promoting the development of electronic information exchange between the customs authorities was also touched upon during the meeting. The main objectives of the initiative are stimulation of mutual trade, simplification of customs procedures when processing export-import transactions.
“Cooperation in the field of transport is one of the key areas of Uzbek-Iranian relations. Our task is to optimize the existing transit tariffs with the Iranian partners, taking into account the export structures of the two countries. This will increase the competitiveness of goods from both sides, including products with high added value,” said minister of foreign trade Jamshid Khodzhaev.
The sides also considered issues on speeding up the launch of the transport corridors Uzbekistan-Turkmenistan-Iran-Oman, China-Kazakhstan-Uzbekistan-Turkmenistan-Iran and the Trans-Afghan corridor.
The Iranian side said that it will make every effort to complete the construction of the Khaf-Herat railway, which will be the continuation of the Mazar-i-Sharif-Herat line under construction and will significantly increase the volume of goods transportation between the countries of the region due to lower prices and delivery terms.
Iran also expressed readiness to study the proposals of the Uzbek side on the construction of a station for the replacement of wheel sets in Herat.
The amount of trade turnover between the two countries amounted to $325 million in 2017.
Kamila Aliyeva is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @Kami_Aliyeva
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