Economy, Auto

Export, Import Statistics Released

Export, Import Statistics Released
Export, Import Statistics Released

Iran's Customs Administration has announced a 55% drop in car imports during the first four months of the current Iranian year (started March 21).

According to the latest statistics released by ICA, 14,186 passenger vehicles worth over $337,974 million entered the country during the first quarter of the year (ended May 21), showing a dramatic drop compared to the same period of last year, which accounted for the import of 31,471 cars worth $642,817 million. Accordingly, during the same period, the number and value of cars imported to the country decreased by 55% and 47% respectively compared to last year's corresponding figure, Mehr News Agency reported.

Production statistics by the International Organization of Motor Vehicle Manufacturers indicated Iran’s auto production increased by 46.7% in the 12-month period of 2014.

The Financial Tribune previously reported that the sudden drop in imports is directly tied with the nuclear talks, with car buyers hoping to save for a new car if the rial were to gain against the dollar. The import of cars with engine capacities of 1,000 to 1,500 cc plus ambulances and hybrid cars was worth $5.5 million. This shows that the numbers grew by 111.8 percent and 117.63 year-on-year. During the same period, the import of knock-down parts for cars and road construction machinery stood at 53,575.9 tons valued at $443.6 million.

The numbers for the same period of preceding year had been 34,121 tons worth $307.7 million, showing growths of 57 and 44 percent respectively. On July 31, Car Policymaking Council spokesman, Sassan Qorbani, said thatduring the last four months, Iran’s car manufacturing grew by 17.6% to reach 329,055 cars.


In another recent report, export of cars fell by half during the same period. Iraq has been Iran’s largest client during the period, mostly buying Peugeot Pars, a localized version of the Peugeot 405 sedan. Iran sold 4,900 sets of cars to Iraq, Sudan, Egypt and Algeria during the period. It also sent a minimal number of cars for technical tests to Spain and Germany.

Iran exported 3,800 Peugeot Pars to Iraq during the four months. Iran set the price up to $6000 (201 million rials) for each unit which excludes charges for registering the vehicles license plate and insurance, according to ISNA.

The second largest-sold car was Kia Pride, each of which sold for $5,500 (190 million rials). The Kia Pride, originally developed in Japan 20 years ago for Ford under the Mazda name, remains an affordable small car for many Iraqis.

The Tiba (Gazelle) was the other Iranian car exported for over $7,000 (220 million rials). Dena, Runna, Samand and the upgraded Soren were other exported cars.

Iraq, considering its political and economic links to Iran, remains the largest export market for Iranian vehicles. In recent years, cars such as Kia Pride and Samand have been bought in bulk by Iraqi carriage companies to be used as taxis. The Pride in particular is known in Iraq for having affordable auto parts.

Due to the ongoing conflict in Syria, sales to that country have dipped considerably with supply lines which once went through western Iraq now under the illegal occupation of the IS militants. Buyers in Lebanon are not in favor of Iranian cars with the last push by Iranian manufacturers selling Iranian vehicles there in 2012.  This is primarily down to the nature of the Lebanese vehicle market, which is heavily deregulated, allowing the import of both new and secondhand cars. Lebanese buyers favor Japanese and South Korean trademarks like Hyundai, Honda and Kia.