Domestic Economy

Deal With Syria to Help Revive War-Ravaged Economy

Deal With Syria to Help  Revive War-Ravaged EconomyDeal With Syria to Help  Revive War-Ravaged Economy

Tehran and Damascus signed an economic agreement to facilitate trade of the Iranian private sector in Syria and eliminate customs tariffs and duties on the export of Iranian goods and services to Syria.

The agreement was signed by Iran’s Minister of Economic affairs and Finance, Ali Tayebnia, and Syria’s minister of Finance, Ismail Ismail in Damascus on Monday, IRNA reported.

The agreement allows the Iranian private sector to actively participate in reconstructing Syrian cities – hard hit by a bloody war which began nearly four years ago.

During his official visit to Syria, Tayebnia met with other top officials from the Syrian government, including Syrian President, Bashar Al-Assad.

During a meeting with Bashar al-Assad, Tayebnia said the multifaceted Iran-Syria relations are “deeply-rooted and unswerving,” adding that Syria’s victory in the fight against terrorism will help restore stability and security across the region.

“The Syrian government and people took Iran’s side during the 8-year imposed war (with Iraq). Therefore, the Iranians will stand by Syria at a time when it is faced with difficulties,” the Iranian official said, vowing that Iran is fully prepared for transferring technical and engineering know-how to Syria.

“Tehran considers support for Damascus a duty, as it believes that Syria is standing on the frontline of confronting Israeli-orchestrated plots in the Middle East,” Tayebnia added.

The Syrian president, for his part, lauded Iranians for offering unwavering support to the Syrian nation and government.

Assad said Iran’s support greatly boosted the Syrians’ steadfastness to resist the crisis, saying: “Enemies tried to wreck havoc on the Syrian economy through sanctions and destroying the country’s infrastructure.”

Emphasizing on what he called “continuation of strategic relations between Damascus and Tehran,” Assad said that such ties will serve the interests of both nations.

He called for a transparent structure that can improve the level of economic cooperation between the two countries.

Iran and Syria have had a strategic alliance ever since the Iraq–Iran war (1980-1988), when Syria sided with Iran against Iraq aggression. Trade between the two countries took a new turn in the wake of militancy in Syria. In a show of support for the Syrian government in its battle against the insurgents, the Iranian government agreed in 2013 to open a new line of credit for the Syrian government enabling it to meet shortages of food and energy and provide assistance for reconstruction.

Trade relations between Syria and the Islamic Republic of Iran are governed by a trade agreement that was signed by the two countries in March 1996 but went into effect only in April 2004.

Major Iranian exports to Syria include industrial equipment, technical and engineering services, spare parts of industrial supplies, chemicals, train compartments, tractor engines, electricity cable supplies, and nuts. Syrian exports to Iran include cotton, textile, olive and olive oil, fruits, and chemicals.