TEHRAN – The value of trade between Iran and Syria rose 60 percent in the previous Iranian calendar year (ended on March 20) as compared to the preceding year, the chairman of Iran-Syria Joint Chamber of Commerce announced.In an interview with IRNA, Keyvan Kashefi said the prospects for expanding economic relations between the two countries are more positive in the current year, given the improving conditions for transit through the Iraqi border, the increase in flights to Syria, and the two governments’ trade agreements.
Expressing dissatisfaction with the current level of trade exchanges between the two countries, the official said: “Trade with Syria is not in proportion with political and social relations with the county. Due to the extensive political and social relations, there is also a demand for the development of trade exchanges and economic relations.”
He stressed the need for improving the infrastructure as a prerequisite for the expansion of mutual trade, saying: “Every trader needs to get his goods to the destination as soon as possible, but due to the fact that Syria does not share a border with Iran, the shipping cost and delivery time increases.”
Kashefi further noted that since Syria is also sanctioned like Iran there are also financial and banking problems in the way of trade with this country.
The head of the Iran-Syria Joint Chamber of Commerce stated that important measures have been taken to expand economic relations between the two sides, saying: “Last year we saw a 60 percent growth in trade with this country, but there is still a gap with the planned horizon.”
Referring to Syria’s restrictive regulations for foreign trade, Kashefi said: “The exchanges between the two countries should be subject to preferential tariffs and in some cases even zero tariffs, so that we can speed up exchanges by reducing costs.”
Referring to the recent visit of the industry, mining and trade minister along with representatives of the private sector to Syria, the official noted that the Syrian side expressed great interest in the expansion of trade with the Iranian side.
“Establishing trade relations with Syria is a win-win game, and both countries will benefit from it,” he added.
Earlier in February, Kashefi had said that Iran and Syria plan to increase their trade turnover to $500 million in 2022.
According to the official, currently, up to eight percent of all the products that are exported from Iran to Iraq end up in the Syrian market, not being recorded as imports from Iran.
Original News : https://www.tehrantimes.com/news/472283/Iran-Syria-annual-trade-up-60-yr-yr