Economy, Domestic Economy

Tehran, Rome Starting Over in Trade

Tehran, Rome Starting Over in TradeTehran, Rome Starting Over in Trade

Iran exported more than $111.6 million to and imported close to $140.6 million worth of goods from Italy during the first two months of the current Iranian year (started March 20).

Iron, steel, oil and petrochemical products, water heaters, sheep and goat hide and casting products were among Iran’s main non-oil exports. In return, different kinds of machinery, automobiles, dishwasher spare parts and human and animal blood for medical purposes were among chief imports from Italy, Eqtesad Online reported.

Iran’s commercial attache to Italy says given the favorable diplomatic relations between the two sides and the willingness of Italian banks to normalize financial interactions with their Iranian counterparts, it is estimated that Italy will become Iran’s top trade partner in Europe.

“What we pursue in relations with Italy is technology transfer, founding of joint companies and joint investments in Iran’s oil, gas, petrochemical, industrial and mining projects,” Mohammad Razi was quoted as saying.

Italy was one of Iran’s main trade partners before the imposition of western sanctions against the country over its nuclear program as bilateral trade stood at €7 billion in 2011. Yet the figure has since dropped to around €1.6 billion.

However, the implementation of the historic nuclear deal between Iran and world powers on January 16, which resulted in the lifting of sanctions against the Islamic Republic, has encouraged Italy to revive its close relations with Iran.

“Italy will definitely try to regain its pre-sanctions position in the Iranian economy, as it enjoys close economic and cultural relations with Iran,” Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni was quoted as saying before making a visit to Iran in the August of 2015.

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi visited Iran in April at the head of a 250-member business delegation for a two-day stay, aimed at boosting economic relations and removing trade barriers in the post-sanctions era.

The visit came after Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s trip to Rome late January, the first foreign visit by the Iranian president after the implementation of the nuclear pact, in which the two sides signed deals worth about €17 billion.