TEHRAN- Investment making by both Iranian and foreign investors has highly increased in Arvand Free Trade Zone in Iran’s southwestern province of Khuzestan.
Seyed Ali Mousavi, the deputy head of Arvand Free Zone Organization for investment and economic affairs, said that the zone has attracted 12 trillion rials (about $285.7 million) of domestic investment since the beginning of the current Iranian calendar year (March 20), which has been 48 percent higher than the figure of the same period of time in the past year.
The official put the domestic investment in the zone at eight trillion rials (about $190.4 million) during the same time span in the previous year.
Saying that the investment making has been mainly made by the private sector in different sectors including industry, production, development, trade, and services, Mousavi expressed hope that the trend of investment making will be preserved by the year end.
He also announced that $50 million has been attracted in the Arvand Free Zone since the beginning of this year in the form of approved foreign investment projects.
Mousavi said: “Despite all the problems in the world, country, province and region due to the outbreak of the coronavirus, as well as the U.S. sanctions, the investment situation in the Arvand Free Zone is favorable and this year we managed to increase the volume of foreign investment in this free zone compared to the last year.”
He added: “This amount of foreign investment in the Arvand Free Zone compared to $2 million investment in the same period last year shows a significant growth.”
Mousavi said: “According to this year’s motto of surge in production, 13 production and industrial projects in Arvand Free Zone have been inaugurated and it is predicted that by the end of this year, this number will reach 20 projects, which will greatly help the growth of investment in the free zone.”
Arvand is one of the seven major free trade zones of Iran.
The zone with an area of 37,400 hectares is in the northwest of the Persian Gulf, including the cities of Abadan, Khorramshahr and Minushahr (Minu Island). It is located at the confluence of Arvand and Karun rivers. The region is in the neighborhood of Iraq and Kuwait.
Considering the important role that the free zones play in promoting the country’s export and employment, Iran is seriously pursuing development of its existing free zones and 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.
Although the sanctions have disrupted Iran’s economic activities, they could not impede the development of Iranian free zones; in fact, the development of these zones has been even accelerated.
Many strides made for increasing activities in the free zones have played a significant part in boosting the country’s non-oil exports and brought prosperity in the other economic sectors.
The secretary of Free Zones High Council also said, “We have started the creation of some infrastructure for the production activities since the past year which will increase production and investment making in these zones.”
Development of the existing free zones and establishment of new zones is currently one of the major economic approaches of Iran and in a bid to attract more investments to these zones Iranian government offers various incentives to the investors.
Tax exemption is one of those incentives which has been offered for more than a decade to the investors in the free zones.
Such incentives have encouraged investment making in these zones.
Putting the value of investments made by the private sector in the free zones at 100 trillion rials (about $2.38 billion) plus $200 million in the past year, Bank expressed hope that the amount of private sector’s investment making in these zones will increase 50 percent in the current year.
He also said that investment making by the private sector in the free zones has risen 70 percent in the past year from its preceding year.
Original News : https://www.tehrantimes.com/news/454422/Investment-making-significantly-rise-in-Arvand-Free-Zone