At a time when global economic boycotts of Iran are being widely reported, Mehdi Ghazanfari, head of Iran’s Trade Promotion Organization, has told IRNA, an official Iranian news agency, that five European countries have been Iran’s main trade partners during the past year.
The European countries trading with Iran include: Germany, Italy, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and France and are worth $15.4 billion.
“Despite the sanctions imposed on Iran by some Western countries and U.S., the European states are keen on continuing bilateral economic cooperation with Iran,” he said, referring to the figure of trade exchange between Iran and those states.
Meanwhile, Iran’s ambassador to Turkey, Bahman Hosseinpour, has told another official Iranian news agency, Fars News, the volume of trade between Iran and Turkey has reached a record $12 billion. This follows efforts by officials on both sides. He expressed hope the two countries’ trade exchanges would increase to $20 billion in the near future.
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Mr. Hosseinpour made his remarks while speaking at a seminar on expansion of Iran-Turkey trade ties and investments.
Reminding the significant role businessmen play in Turkish-Iranian relations, Mr. Hosseinpour said: “Iran and Turkey as two great states do not deserve such a meager level of trade exchanges. And promoting the volume to a proper level is merely possible through [enhanced activity of] traders.”
He further said although the private sector plays a significant role in international trade on a global scale, the two countries’ governments currently run Turkish-Iranian trade exchanges.
Iranian Minister of Commerce Masoud Mirkazemi is currently in Ankara, Turkey to discuss ways for expansion of commercial cooperation. Mr. Mirkazemi heads an Iranian delegation to Ankara that includes 170 businessmen and exporters from the Iranian private sector.
David Bedein can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org