By Abdul Kerimkhanov
Iran's non-oil trade exceeded $42 billion between March 21 and September 22, 2019, Mehdi Mirashrafi, the Director General of the Iranian Customs Administration and Iranian Deputy Minister of Economic Affairs and Finance, said on October 6.
Iran's non-oil exports (excluding crude oil, kiln oil and kerosene) totalled over 70 million tonnes valued at $20.9 billion during this period, according to the Iranian media.
During the above mentioned period, the top five exporting countries in Iran were China, Iraq, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and Afghanistan, respectively, accounting for 75 percent of Iran's total export value.
Iran also imported 16.5 million tons of goods valued at $21.2 billion during the period.
In turn, Iranian Minister of Industry, Mine and Trade Reza Rahmani said on October 3 that his country is planning to further decline the volume of imports by 2021, in a move to increase national economy’s resistance to U.S.-posed pressures.
He made the remarks at a specialized meeting held at the venue of the Ministry of Industry.
Rahmani said that Iran’s imports volume will decrease to $10 billion by 2021, adding that materializing the said objective requires $2 billion worth of investment.
He hailed efforts taken by the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) for the provision of liquidity needed for industries especially in the March 21-September 22, 2019.
Rahmani further pointed to the provision of liquidity as the most important concern of production boom in the country.
“With the coordination made in this regard, giant steps have been taken in order to settle the problem,” he said.
On October 6, CBI Governor Abdolnasser Hemmati announced that the inflation had stabilized and his country’s national currency the rial has regained over 40 percent of its value, despite the U.S. unilateral sanctions.
Last month, Deputy Head of Iran Small Industries and Industrial Parks Organization (ISIPO) Ali Asqar Masaheb announced that Iran will undertake new measures to further strengthen its non-oil exports with a new bill to be tabled at the Iranian Parliament.
Washington’s unilateral sanctions against Tehran began in November 2018, five months after U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew from an international deal on Iran’s nuclear program.
Stating that the bans were working properly, Trump tightened them in May 2019.
Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94
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