TEHRAN (Iran News) – Head of International Affairs of Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mine and Agriculture (ICCIMA) says the trade volume of Iran and Uzbekistan has been around $146m in the first five months of 2021 and despite the existing potentials, the private sectors of the two countries are unhappy with the current trade volume.
In the meeting of the founders of the Iran-Uzbekistan Joint Chamber which was held to elect the members of the board of directors, Mohammad Reza Karbasi expressed the dissatisfaction of the private sectors of Iran and Uzbekistan about the current trade volume, adding that the trade volume of the two states stood at around $146m in the first five months of 2021.
He said that the trade volume of the two countries rose from $180m in 2018 to $380m in 2019. He added that statistics show that in the first five months of 2021, the bilateral trade rose to $146m which shows 39 percent growth comparing to the same period in 2020. Karbasi said but despite this rise, the private sectors of the two countries are unhappy because there are abundance of capacities for economic cooperation between Iran and Uzbekistan and expressed hope that by mid-2022, the trade volume of the two countries would increase considerably.
Karbasi went on to say that fortunately in the past months two agreements have been signed between the chambers of commerce of Iran and Uzbekistan as well as Iran’s chamber with the Union of Export Traders of Uzbekistan.
He reiterated by completing the Iran-Uzbekistan Joint Chamber of Commerce, it will witness regular meetings between the members of the chamber and it will help to meet the demands of the economic activists of the two states.
Karbasi then pointed to the capacities for boosting bilateral cooperation like cooperation in the fields of medicine and medical equipment, technical and engineering services in implementing projects required by the Uzbeks, and construction material and steel and metals, noting that Uzbekistan is good in the field of cotton production and it will help the two countries to cooperate in the textile sector. He expressed hope in the near future, the cooperation between Iran and Uzbekistan would increase.
He then pointed to some obstacles in way of boosting Iran-Uzbekistan economic relations and said there are obstacles in way of Iranian and Uzbek economic activists which need senior officials of the two countries to resolve them. He said that one of the obstacles is the failure in implementing the preferential trade agreement of the two countries which needs the chambers of commerce of the two countries to take action for solving it.
Then Deputy Chairman Deputy Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Republic of Uzbekistan Mr. Usmanov, for his part, thanked those who were behind the launch of the Iran-Uzbekistan Joint Chamber and said as other participants in the meeting have said, the economic relation of Iran and Uzbekistan is growing and both countries know their duties to bring welfare for their people and to open the way for economic growth. He added that both in Uzbekistan and Iran positive developments have happened in the growth of economic relations.
He emphasized the role of traders of both countries in boosting economic relations and investment of Iran and Uzbekistan, adding that in late 2020, the MoU was signed for the launch of the Iran-Uzbekistan Joint Chamber and he announced the formation of Uzbek members for the chamber.
Usmanov noted that as Mr. Karbaschi has said the issue of preferential tariff, rise in the number of direct flights and banking cooperation are the strategic axis for developing and boosting bilateral cooperation. He added that Uzbekistan is keen to increase its cooperation with Iran in transportation and commercial banks. He also called for opening trade offices of Uzbek and Iranian companies with an eye on introducing and marketing the products of the two countries for expansion of economic relations.
Meanwhile the Commercial attache of Uzbekistan Embassy in Tehran Mr. Umid Babaev, for his part, said that expansion of bilateral relations in all fields of economy, transportation, trade and communications is very important for Uzbekistan and said in recent years these relations have achieved some new horizons and directions.
He then pointed to recent investments between the two countries which have been profitable for traders of the two states, adding that only in 2021, some 41 new Iranian companies have been registered in Uzbekistan and it is an honor to him to announce that the bilateral trade of Iran and Uzbekistan surpassed $240b by July 2021, reiterating that this figure does not fit the trade capacities of the two states and it is expected the ground for increasing it to be prepared.