BY: Ebrahim Fallahi

‘$8b allocated to supply basic goods in 2 months’

June 1, 2019

TEHRAN – Central Bank of Iran (CBI) has allocated $8 billion for importing basic goods in the first two months of the current Iranian calendar year (March 21- May 21), Deputy Minister of Industry, Mining and Trade told Tehran Times on Saturday.

“According to CBI, some $8 billion has been allocated for importing basic goods in this year’s first two months which is significantly higher than that of the last year’s same period,” Abbas Ghobadi said in a press conference which was held at the Industry, Mining and Trade Ministry building in Tehran.

The official stated that the country’s total foodstuff turnover stands at about $100 billion of which the share of imports is only $10 billion.

In December 2018, the Iranian Industry, Mining and Trade Minister Reza Rahmani had announced that in the last Iranian calendar year the government paid $14 billion of foreign currency at official exchange rate to import basic goods.

Elsewhere in his remarks Ghobadi noted that regarding the basic goods, the country is well supplied and even for some commodities like red meat the government no longer provides the importers with foreign currency at the official exchange rate of 42,000 rials.

The government provides importers of basic goods with foreign currency at an official exchange rate of 42,000 rials to support foreign trade and to help supplying basic goods into the country.

Mentioning the unjust U.S. sanctions on the country, Ghobadi said the government is taking all necessary measures to mitigate the economic consequences of these sanctions for people.

Earlier in May, Deputy Director of the Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration (IRICA) said following a directive by President Hassan Rouhani, IRICA is providing new facilities for importers of basic goods which makes them able to clear their commodities in less than an hour, IRNA reported.

“For basic goods such as meat, system formalities and clearance procedures will be carried out in less than an hour and importers can transport their goods soon after,” Mehrdad Jamal Orounaqi said.

In the same month, the head of IRICA said his organization has selected 120 major manufacturing companies under the Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) framework to provide them with especial facilities like non-stop and duty-free clearance.

“These 120 companies, some of which are knowledge-based, can clear their goods using a non-stop green customs path,” Mehdi Mir-Ashrafi said, Mehr news agency reported.

According to the official, one of the problems that most of the producers are facing is the lack of liquidity, in this regard IRICA has agreed to help the producers by letting them to clear their goods by paying the duties partially.

“This means an amount of the imported goods equal to the customs clearance duties are kept, and the rest will be cleared without any payment and further added value, which means they are cleared duty free,” he added.

The Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) plan provides selected Iranian companies with 18 different forms of facilities which cover a wide range of customs related procedures and processes.

EF/MA

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