Economy, Domestic Economy

Sugar Imports Banned Until March 2018

Iranians consume between 2.2 and 2.4 million tons of sugar a year.Iranians consume between 2.2 and 2.4 million tons of sugar a year.

Sugar imports have been banned until the end of the current Iranian year (March 20, 2018), deputy agriculture minister for expansion of commerce and processing industries, Ali Akbar Mehrfard, said.

Mehrfard explained that the ban follows a rise in domestic production this year and huge imports during the seven months to Oct. 22.

During the seven-month period, more than 708,000 tons of unrefined sugar and sugar cubes worth $356.4 million were imported, registering an over 46.7% and 52.3% increase in weight and value respectively compared with the corresponding period of last year.

Iranians consume between 2.2 and 2.4 million tons of sugar a year and last year, an import of over 550,000 tons of the product was needed.

“Around 1.7 million tons of sugar are estimated to be produced in the current Iranian year (started March 21) to register a 6% increase compared with last year,” the executive of the Sugarbeet and Sugar Project with the Ministry of Agriculture said.

“This autumn, close to 17,000 hectares of farmland will go under sugarbeet cultivation. So far, sugarbeet has been planted on over 14,000 hectares of land in 12 provinces. We predict the harvest of more than 7 million tons of the crop this year to register a 16.6% increase compared with last year,” Alireza Yazdani was also quoted as saying by Mehr News Agency.

According to Deputy Agriculture Minister Abbas Keshavarz, Iran aims to achieve self-sufficiency in beet production within three years.

A ceremony was held at the headquarters of Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture in Tehran on July 30 to celebrate the record high production of sugar in the last Iranian year (March 2016-17), which reached 1.65 million tons.

According to ICCIMA, as reported by its news portal, this amount of sugar production is unprecedented in the past 120 years.

Bahman Danaei, secretary of Iran Guild Union for Sugar and Sugar Cube Factories, said the record production indicates Iran is able to meet 75% of its demand for sugar through domestic production.

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