October 21, 2020

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Over 40% of Iran’s exports done through free, special zones

TEHRAN- Over 40 percent of Iran’s exports is done through the country’s free trade zones and special economic zones, according to Morteza Bank, the secretary of Iranian Free Zones High Council.

Bank believes that the figure would have been higher if there had not been the banking limitations due to the sanctions.

The current government has defined special programs for the development of these zones and commodities worth $169 billion have been exported from these areas in the past seven years.

The mentioned programs have also led to the attraction of domestic and foreign investment to the free and special zones.

Bank has previously announced that the value of exports from Iran’s free trade zones and special economic zones stood at $17 billion during the past Iranian calendar year (ended on March 19).

He said that commodities worth $5 billion produced in these zones have been sent to different areas in the country during the previous year.

Bank put the value of products imported to the free trade zones and special economic zones at $5 billion in the past year.

Emphasizing that the value of imports to these zones is very low compared to the worth of exports from them, the official said, “We are planning to reach the same level of exports in the current year as well.”

Free trade zones and special economic zones are expected to play an important role in Iran’s exports and imports and the prosperity of trade and commerce, according to the secretary of Free Zones High Council.

In recent years, considering the important role that free and special zones play in promoting the country’s export and employment, Iran has been seriously pursuing the development of its existing zones and the establishment of new zones as well.

More development measures in this field have been taking since the U.S. re-imposition of sanctions on the Iranian economy in November 2018, as Iran is reducing its dependence on the oil income while elevating its domestic production and non-oil exports.

In a ceremony earlier this month for the inauguration of 58 development projects with a total investment of about 150 trillion rials (over $3.5 billion) in the country’s free trade zones and special economic zones through video conference, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said these zones are no longer only distribution hubs and have become production centers.

As the secretary of Free Zones High Council has announced, the production sector accounts for over 40 percent of the employment in the country’s free trade zones and special economic zones.

The official also announced that the services sector accounts for over 30 percent of the employment in these zones.

Bank has said that the figure for the production sector employment is 95 percent in the special economic zones.

According to the official, the whole investment in the special economic zones is made in the production sector and by the private sector.

MA/MA

Original News : https://www.tehrantimes.com/news/452863/Over-40-of-Iran-s-exports-done-through-free-special-zones

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