Iran calls for expediting road, rail, sea trade with Russia

July 17, 2020 - 12:7

TEHRAN- Iranian Ambassador to Russia Kazem Jalali said that his country’s seeking ways to facilitate and speed up trade with Russia via road, rail, and sea, IRNA reported.

Making the remarks in a videoconference with the senior Russian officials on Thursday, Jalali said that necessary steps should be taken to increase non-oil exports, and the problems and obstacles should be removed in this due.

During the videoconference, both sides’ officials also discussed creating logistics and warehouse centers in the other country’s market.

Also, in another video-conference, which was held between Jalali and Russian officials at Federal Customs Service including Vladimir Vladimirovich Ivin, the deputy head of the customs, on Tuesday, the two sides investigated ways of boosting bilateral customs cooperation.

Addressing the conference, Jalali said that Iran is ready to create customs "Green Corridor" with Russia on the pandemic occasion when many international activities have been brought to lockdown.

To have multilateral cooperation with the Eurasian Economic Union (EUEA) in the framework of Russian President Vladimir Putin's initiative to create the customs "Green Corridor" in coronavirus and post-coronavirus periods is among the main agenda of development of economic relations, the ambassador said.

Russia suggested considering President Putin’s initiative to create "green corridors" for delivery of essential goods that would be unimpeded by sanctions and trade wars, news agency "TASS" quoted Russia’s Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) envoy Alexander Lukashevich as saying in late April.

Putin talked of the initiative at the emergency summit of the G20 group last March.

In mid-February, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov said that the trade turnover between Iran and Russia has followed an upward trend in the past two years despite the challenging external conditions, Tass reported.

"Despite the challenging external conditions, the Russian-Iranian trade turnover is rising. It increased to $2 billion last year," he said.

Mentioning the preferential trade agreement between Iran and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), Morgulov expressed hope that the agreement would facilitate the trade between the two sides and give an extra impetus to the expansion of ties.

According to the official data, trade turnover between Russia and Iran amounted to $1.74 billion in 2018 and $1.589 billion in the period between January-September 2019. 

Agriculture products are the backbone of trade turnover between the countries. Trade in the agriculture sector amounted to 1.283 billion in January-September 2019, an increase of 41.6 percent year-on-year.

In late December 2019, Moscow's commercial representative in Tehran, Rustam Zhiganshin had announced that more than 50 percent of Iran and Russia’s total bilateral trade is being conducted through national currencies.

"If in 2018 payments in national currencies comprised 40 percent [of the two countries’ trade], in 2019 this quota has already exceeded 50 percent," Zhiganshin told sputnik.

Russia’s exports to Iran include machinery, steel, wagons, wood, vegetable oil, corn, barley, red meat, and other goods, while its imports from the Islamic Republic are mostly dairy products, vegetables, and fruits.

In a meeting between the Iranian ambassador to Russia and Russian Deputy Energy Minister Anatoly Tikhonov, in Moscow earlier this month, the two sides agreed on holding the 16th Iran-Russia Joint Economic Committee online or face to face in September.

Jalali and Tikhonov also discussed the process of the latest energy cooperation between the two countries.

Holding a working group on energy cooperation between the two countries and the implementation of several new projects in the fields of agriculture, energy, and transportation were among the topics discussed during the meeting. 

MA/MA

Photo: Iranian Ambassador to Russia Kazem Jalali

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