Economy, Domestic Economy

Non-Oil Foreign Trade at $33.8b in 5 Months

Non-Oil Foreign Trade at $33.8b in 5 MonthsNon-Oil Foreign Trade at $33.8b in 5 Months

Non-oil trade worth $33.8 billion was registered in the first five months of the current Iranian year (March 21-August 22), according to data released by Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration.

Non-oil export stood at 39 million tons valued at $16.9 billion, down 7% in terms of weight and 15.79% in value compared with the similar period last year, ISNA reported.

Meanwhile, about 14 million tons of non-oil goods valued at $16.9 billion were imported, down 16% in terms of weight and 19.36% in value compared with last year's corresponding period.

 While the data indicates a slightly positive balance of trade during the five-month period, trade surplus has shrunk drastically from the $328 million, $520 million and $2.2 billion recorded in the fourth, third and second months of the current Iranian year respectively.

Major exports during the period included liquefied petroleum gases and hydrocarbons, valued at $759 million, liquefied propane worth $636 million and bitumen worth $561 million.

Polyethylene, liquid butane, iron and steel products, urea, methanol, light oil and semi-finished iron and steel products were other major exports.

China, Iraq, United Arab Emirates, India, Afghanistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Pakistan, Italy and Egypt were the top 10 export destinations.

The main imports during the period included corn for cattle feed ($528 million), rice ($354 million), soybean meal ($338 million), soybean ($327 million), wheat ($291million) and automobile parts ($288 million).

The UAE, China, India, South Korea, Turkey, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Netherlands and Taiwan were the top exporting countries to Iran during the five-month period.

> Customs Revenues Up

Meanwhile, head of Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration, Masoud Karbasian on Saturday said the implementation of electronic customs system since the beginning of the current Iranian year has led to 5% increase in customs revenues and reduced the process of export from 7 days to 1 day.

The IRICA hopes to reduce smuggling through the use of electronic customs systems. "Iran's customs system is now electronically connected with customs authorities in 70 countries. Plans are also underway to electronically connect the IRICA with the free trade zones across the country to help prevent smuggling," said Karbasian.

According to Karbasian, a total of 17,778 vehicles worth $42.3 million were imported during the first five months of the year compared with 36,433 vehicles valued at $74.8 million imported during last year's similar period.

The official said IRICA has called on the Ministry of Industries, Mining and Traded to reduce the import of luxury cars and boost the import of affordable cars for a wider range of customers. "To this end, the IRICA has submitted a proposal to the ministry to impose import tariffs on cars based on their value rather than the engine capacity," he said.