Iran-Kazakhstan annual trade rises 29%

June 24, 2022 - 13:27

TEHRAN- The value of trade between Iran and Kazakhstan rose 29 percent in the past Iranian calendar year 1400 (ended on March 20), the spokesman of Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration (IRICA)announced.

Ruhollah Latifi put the annual trade between the two countries at 729,000 tons valued at $265.2 million, with 71 percent growth in terms of weight.

Iran’s export to Kazakhstan stood at 512,000 tons worth $187.2 million, with 11 percent and 51 percent rise in value and weight, respectively, and Kazakhstan’s export to Iran stood at 217,000 tons value at $78 million, with 108 percent and 141 percent growth in value and weight, respectively, in the past year, the IRICA spokesman further stated.

He named agricultural, livestock and food products, construction materials, home appliances, oil products, electronic appliances, industrial machinery, bags, shoes and clothing, minerals and agricultural machinery as the major products Iran exported to Kazakhstan and basic goods, road tractors, and industrial machinery as the major items Iran imported from that country in the previous year.

Active economic diplomacy, trade development, strengthening of shipping lines and benefitting from railway capacities along with transit benefits can lead to the development of economic and political relations between the two countries, the official noted.

On Tuesday, Rahmatollah Khormali, the director-general of Iran’s Trade Promotion Organization (TPO)’s office of Central Asia, Caucasus, and Russia, had said that Iran and Kazakhstan aim to reach the bilateral trade of $3 billion by the next three years.

He made the remarks referring to the recent trip of the president of Kazakhstan to Iran in which nine cooperation MOUs were signed by the two sides.

“According to the goal set by the officials of Iran-Kazakhstan Joint Economic Committee in late February, the value of trade between the two countries will increase to $3 billion in the next three years, and the export of technical and engineering services is seen in this goal. There is also scope for cooperation in the field of oil”, the official further stated.

Kazakhstan’s President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev met Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi in Tehran on Sunday, and nine MOUs were signed in the presence of the two presidents to expand cooperation in different areas between the two countries.

In the same day, Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (ICCIMA) hosted an Iran-Kazakhstan business forum.

The forum was attended by ICCIMA Head Gholam-Hossein Shafeie and Kazakhstan’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Trade and Integration Bakhyt Sultanov.

Addressing the gathering, the ICCIMA head referring to the importance of Kazakhstan as a Central Asian country in Iran's foreign policy, said: "Given the resources and capabilities of the two countries in areas such as oil and gas, shipping in the Caspian Sea, petrochemicals, agriculture, metals and minerals, chemicals, animal husbandry, construction materials, pharmacy, technical and engineering services, development of relations with the Republic of Kazakhstan has a special significance for Iran.

Kazakhstan's active participation in world trade and membership in the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) has already enhanced the potential for trade relations between the two countries, Shafeie noted while complaining that unfortunately, despite these potentials, the trade relations between the two countries is still low.

He then called for operational steps, including visa facilitation, to increase trade between the two sides.

Kazakhstan’s deputy prime minister, for his part, emphasizing that Iran is a very important trade partner for Kazakhstan, said: "The peak of trade relations between the two countries was reached in 2016, when the worth of trade reached one billion dollars. But in 2020, due to some events, including the coronavirus outbreak, trade between the two countries fell by a quarter to about $238 million.”

“Last year we saw an 85-percent increase in trade between Iran and Kazakhstan, as trade between the two countries reached $440 million. It should be noted that 99 percent of Kazakhstan's exports to Iran are grains, of which $150 million is wheat export”, Sultanov further stated.

Saying that in the first quarter of this year, the trade between the two countries grew by 43 percent, and 70 percent of Kazakh companies export their products to Iran, the official added: "We can expand our relations and reach $3 billion value of bilateral trade”.

"Given the Ukraine-Russia war, we are ready to increase the exports of grain, including wheat, to Iran," the Kazakh minister said and reiterated: "We can export at least $1 billion of agricultural products and grains to Iran."

Shafeie and Sultanov had also met at the place of ICCIMA on May 23 to discuss mutual economic opportunities and challenges.

In that meeting, the two sides explored ways to increase the level of economic cooperation between the two countries.

MA/MA

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