Economy, Business And Markets

Call for Promoting Free Trade Among Islamic Countries

Call for Promoting Free Trade Among Islamic Countries
Call for Promoting Free Trade Among Islamic Countries

The necessity of adopting a preferential tariff system, as well as promoting free trade policies among Muslim countries was highlighted by the minister of industry, mines and trade on the sidelines of the 5th annual meeting of the Aman Union on Tuesday.

“Muslim countries make up over 25 percent of the world’s land and population,” said Mohammad Reza Ne’mat-zadeh; however, “while these countries share of the global trade volume is only 12 percent.”

Speaking with journalists on the sidelines of the meeting, Ne’mat-Zadeh said Muslim countries mostly conduct trade with non-Muslim countries, while allocating only a small proportion of their foreign trade to Muslim partners.  

“So, Islamic countries have the potential and capacity to further develop their cooperation,” asserted the minister.

The annual meeting of the Aman Union is co-organized by the Export Guarantee Fund of Iran (EGFI) and Aman Union’s secretariat general in Kuwait. The event is currently being held in Tehran and ends today.

More than 70 insurance and credit experts from 27 countries are attending the meeting to formulate the Union’s 2015 plan, as well as to share their experiences from the previous year.

However, cooperation among Muslim countries depends upon certain conditions, said the minister, pointing to political relations as the most important one.

“Iran is seeking to improve its relationship with the rest of the world, especially with Muslim countries,” Ne’mat-zadeh asserted.

Among the conditions for promoting trade among Muslim countries, the minister also referred to the terms and conditions of foreign trade, suggesting that establishing a system of preferential tariffs can facilitate trade among these countries.  

“Such a system has already been developed between Iran, Pakistan, and Turkey,” announced the minister.

The minister also called on Muslim countries to establish joint markets, adding that it requires the improvement of industrial and technological capabilities of these countries.

Preferential tariffs are an advantageous import tax system established by a given state for all or some goods of certain countries and they do not apply to the goods of other countries.

Aman Union is a professional forum that brings together commercial and non-commercial risks insurers and reinsurers from member countries of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) and of the Arab Investment & Export Credit Guarantee Corporation (DHAMAN).

The union launched in 2009 following an agreement between the Arab Investment and Export Credit Guarantee Corporation (DHAMAN) and the Islamic Corporation for the Insurance of Investment and Export Credit (ICIEC)  to join their efforts for establishing a union for commercial and non-commercial risk insurers and reinsurers in their respective member countries.